Are you and your family headed on a road trip this summer? Are you worried about keeping your children entertained during the long car ride? Already anticipating the infamous, “are we there yet?” question? Well, have no fear I have put together some great ideas that can entertain and educate your children all at the same time!
License Plate Game: Print out a blank copy of the US map. Give your child a marker or crayon. When you’re on the road, have your child look out for all the different state license plates. When they spot the different states on license plates, they color the corresponding state on their map. How many states can they find?
Design Your Own Map: If your child is on the younger side, give them a kid friendly map of where you are going. Have them cross off landmarks and destinations as you approach them. For example, if you will cross 4 bridges during the course of your trip, each time you pass one your child can cross it off the map. Older children can use a map to help with directions, or you can print out some fun facts about the areas you’ll travel through and have the kids find the relevant places on the map.
Traditional Travel Board Games: Many of the traditional board games come in travel size for long trips. Stock up on Monopoly or Monopoly Junior, Boggle, Scrabble and Battleship – they all reinforce a variety of educational skills. There are many great travel games; be sure to stock up on your kids’ favorite.
Travel Journal: Give your child a notebook, crayons, stickers and other art supplies. Have them decorate the journal and write about their upcoming destination. Encourage them to be as creative as possible. You can even write in the journal yourself and initiate a dialogue with your child to help generate ideas to get them started.
Scavenger Hunt: Give your child a list of things they are to watch for while you are driving. They can keep a running tab of how many they find along the way. For example: How many cows did you see? How many sky scrapers did you see? How many shopping malls did we pass?
Read, READ, Read: I am fan of the good old fashion idea of reading! Pile up on kid friendly books, magazines, etc. Allow your child to enjoy reading materials of interest as you travel to your destination. If your child is a fan of sports, put together a selection of fresh new sports related material for them read along the way.
I hope these ideas are helpful and make your travels exciting and fun! Happy and safe travels this summer! Let me know your road trip game ideas!
Yolanda is the mom of 3 young children in the Delaware Valley. She is the Founder of Team Tutor.