You are going on a long car journey with your family. You have ticked off everything in your checklist. You have packed sufficient supplies for the journey. You have pre-booked your accommodation facilities. Your car has been certified to be in perfect mechanical condition to handle the rigors of your journey. Everything seems set, but you have forgotten one thing; how hard it is to keep children entertained in a car for hours. Children have a notoriously fickle attention span, and they easily get bored within a confined space with nothing to do. Luckily, this guide offers five simple suggestions on how you can keep the little ones entertained during your journey.
If you will be travelling through areas that are rich in local wildlife, then you are in luck. Children are inherently excited by spotting animals, especially when they have not encountered them in the past. Do some light research on the animals that you might encounter across your journey. Have the kids be on the lookout for these animals. You can even turn this into a points-based game where each animal spotted earns the ‘spotter’ a point. You can even make it educational by giving them some fun facts on these animals. Even in largely urban or suburban areas, you might encounter pets, small animals such as squirrels or even birds. They can be incorporated in the animal spotting game.
Singing is another activity that children enjoy, especially those still in kindergarten and lower classes. On dull stretches of the highway, you can ask each of them to teach you a song that they learnt in school or one that they sing with their friends during play time. Everyone can get a turn and the whole family can participate in the sing-along to help pass time.
You don’t have to be a master story-teller to engage your kids in fascinating stories. If you have none at hand, carry an interesting story book and read each child a story that they might be interested in. Most parents have an idea on the storytelling topics that engage their children. Each child can get a turn to have a story read/told to them. You can even ask them to share their favorite stories with the family, children are can easily entertain themselves if you give them a platform. if your car has a good sound system, you can load some audio-books with children stories to keep the young ones entertained.
Stuff to play with
If you have very young children, then you can allow them to carry a few of their smaller toys to play with during the journey. Small trucks, toys or even a tablet can keep them engaged for hours. Think of it as the road trip version of in-flight entertainment. While your one sure insurance cover will cover most injuries, don’t carry anything with sharp edges which might be an injury risk.
The Quiet Game / Last Word Game
The last word game is a simple board game that children and adults can participate in. It involves ‘winning’ by connecting concepts, topics and words based on the contents of the cards involved. A game can last for hours, and it also has an educational aspect to it. The silent game is a more low-budget option where participants compete to stay quiet the longest. It can be useful when the parents need a bit of peace and quiet after a particularly noisy journey.