While everyone is excited about a road trip in the beginning, after a short time you’ll start hearing the “are we there yet” phrase again and again. When kids get bored on a long car ride, they often start fighting with each other. The good news is that you can use educational activities to help keep the peace, and your sanity, on those long car rides. Here’s a look at some fun activities to have prepared for your next big car trip. They’re fun and your kids will be learning too. Best of all, you won’t have to hear your kids say “I’m bored” every five minutes.
Play the Alphabet Game
The great thing about playing the alphabet game is that while it goes fairly fast, it can be played again and again. It’s especially great for kids who are learning the alphabet and kids learning to read. Consider having kids write out their ABCs on small dry erase lap boards to keep track. Then, kids have to find every letter of the alphabet, starting with A, by looking at car license plates, highway markers, street signs, and other items that have letters or words on them. Remember, kids have to complete the alphabet in order. Kids can work together on this game or they can have a contest to see who can finish the alphabet first.
50 States License Plate Game
Let kids learn more about the 50 states by playing the 50 states license plate game. Get started by having your kids hand-write out the 50 states on their own dry erase board or you can print out a list before you leave home. Once kids have a list of all the states, have them start looking for plates. See who can get all the states in the shortest amount of time. Of course, if you can’t find all the state plates, the person with the highest amount of states crossed off the list can be declared the winner.
Traveling journaling is a great way to get kids involved in the trip. Give them some crayons and a notebook when you leave. Then, have them make their own travel journals as you go on your journey. Let them draw pictures of the cool things they see along the way, and as you enter new places, they can write something they like about that area. If you have older children, they write more about the stops along the way, what they ate, and their favorite spots on the trip.
Traveling Scavenger Hunt
Before you leave on the trip, come up with a list of items your kids should search for while you are driving. Keep the areas you’ll be driving through in mind when you make up the list. As you travel, have kids search for the items on the list and see who can cross everything off the list first. It’s a great way to work on your children’s concentration while making them more aware of their surroundings.