5 Handy Traveling Activities for Children

I’ve been asked what are great activities you can do when traveling with a three year old toddler which seemed like a pretty appropriate question to tackle after being in the car with a toddler and a baby for nearly a day.  Personally, it has always been pretty easy to handle Gavin in the car because he loves stories and books.

Here are some ways we keep Gavin entertained in a car:

1. Books of all kinds – sticker books, story books (ones he can read himself since I get motion sickness – that’s another reason to promote early reading), activity books (there is an interesting range of activity books called “backseat books” which are specially designed for traveling – although some titles are for older kids you may find them useful if your child is precocious).

One book that we bought during this trip, which kept Gavin occupied for quite a while, was the Chuggington 3D book.  It comes with special 3D glasses so you can see special 3D images within the story book.  There are also activities throughout the book as well as stickers.  For RM14.95, I thought it was pretty worth it.

2. Audio stories on MP3 – this was always a hit for Gavin, particularly for the longer drives.

3. Made up stories – an alternative to the audio stories are your own made up stories.  It’s a fun way to get your child’s imagination going as well.

4. Puzzles – the Logico puzzle is a great activity for the car (although not so great for you if you get motion sickness and your child needs you to look over his shoulder).

5. Portable DVD player – when all else fails, the portable DVD player is good for killing an hour or two.

For more ideas, you can take a look at this excellent list on Amazon.

These days, I reckon keeping Gavin entertained is the easy part.  It is keeping Gareth entertained that is the challenge.  What are some good traveling activities for a 6 to 12 month old baby?

1. Teethers – lots of them.  Variety is the spice of life and having something different to chew on is sometimes the very thing that Gareth needs to occupy his attention for a while.

2. Lights and Sounds – any toys with lights, sounds and buttons to press.  The Leapfrog Phonics radio is a pretty good hit with Gareth.  It has buttons, lights, sounds and pages to turn.

3. Books – cloth books and touchy-feely board books are great for little ones developing an interest in books.  These are essential if you want any hope of keeping your baby’s hands off your older child’s books.

4. Music – Gareth is a music baby so singing songs and listening to music is also helpful.

5. Sleep – when all else fails, plan your trip during nap times.  A sleeping baby doesn’t need entertaining.

Published by Shen-Li

SHEN-LI LEE is the author of “Brainchild: Secrets to Unlocking Your Child’s Potential”. She is also the founder of Figur8.net (a website on parenting, education, child development) and RightBrainChild.com (a website on Right Brain Education, cognitive development, and maximising potentials). In her spare time, she blogs on Forty, Fit & Fed, and Back to Basics.

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