Waiting and Travel Games for Kids

Road-trip from Colorado to Utah

A quiet moment on a long car trip

MSN had an article on waiting games for children – restaurant, plane, long lines and cars.   The full article can be found here.  The author is Barbara Rowley and her bio from the site is “[her] most recent book is Baby Days: Activities, Ideas and Games for Enjoying Daily Life With a Child Under Three.”  Sounds like a wonderful book.

The article was full of fun ideas, but one really caught my attention.  This is from a Nancy Kay of Nashville:

[P]uppets or stuffed animals to go along with a story on tape. The kids can act out the plot while listening to the story — and keep the baby entertained at the same time. 

I adore books on tape (or rather CD or Digital books).  My daughters (ages 6 & 3) are loving listening to Mary Pope Osborn’s Magic Tree House Series on tape, read by the author.  She has a sweet voice and my kids really get into the stories.  I will periodically stop the CD and ask questions to see if I need to clarify anything, or to check their understanding of the story line.

I also think that it is a good way to teach and practice the reading skill of foreshadowing.  (What just happened?  What do you think is going to happen? etc.)

A friend of mine said that she just buys a bag of pipe cleaners and lets the kids go wild.  She said that the things that they create are amazing.  I think that it’s a great idea for stretching the imagination!

I also give each of my daughters a cookie sheet and I have a bag packed full of activities – coloring books, toys, books, car-friendly crafts, etc.

The cookie sheet is a perfect table for anything car-activity imaginable and also doubles for a snack-tray when needed.

If all else fails, then I bring out the movies.  I try to work out all other possible options first though – including music appreciation, scenery watching, and car games.

Our favorite car game is a modified “I spy”.  Modified, because my girls are on the younger side, so instead of saying “something that begins with the letter…,” we say “something that is …” and list a color.

What kinds of things do you do?

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2 thoughts on “Waiting and Travel Games for Kids

  1. Awesome. I love listening to lids talk as they play. I can imagine a little pipe cleaner village would provide lots of entertainment. Send pictures of they’re ever available.

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