My four children and I relocated to a different state some years ago. Until then, I was always nervous about venturing to far destinations. Not only was I scared of getting lost, but I was also worried about the added stress of my kids in the back seat. What if I was on the wrong road and they started fighting with each other at the same time?! I would have gone crazy!
Thankfully, our first official 8 hour road trip went so well that we’ve traveled to several other places together since then. Don’t get me wrong though, I had to go in armored with road trip games for kids and several other goodies to get it to go so smoothly. Some of them might even seem too easy to be effective, but trust me; they’ve all been tested and proven to work by this travelin’ momma!
1. Cheesy Wheezy Boom
The Cheesy Wheezy game is played when any yellow car or truck is spotted. Whichever child spots it first gets to yell out “cheesy wheezy boom”! The first one to reach 10 points wins the game.
2. I Spy
An oldie, but goodie! There are tons of things to see out the window when driving. “I Spy” will not only keep them entertained, but it’s a good practice of colors for younger children too.
3. I’m Going on a Camping Trip
“I’m Going on a Camping Trip” is an ABC game that is played verbally aloud. Starting with the letter ‘A’ and going through to ‘Z’, each child or person will say something that starts with the letter that falls on their turn. For example, “I’m going on a camping trip and bringing an apple. I’m going on a camping trip and bringing a bear.”
4. Etch a Sketch
Although I managed to find several of these from garage sales, they are also fairly inexpensive to buy too. The Etch a Sketch comes in two different sizes and assorted colors. It is sturdy, doesn’t require batteries, and doesn’t have any little pieces to try and find down in the car seat cushions. The Etch a Sketch is a type of drawing toy, hence the name, to keep kids entertained right there in their seat and on their lap.
5. Magna Doodle
Similar to the Etch a Sketch, the Magna Doodle is also a drawing board, but it comes with an attached pen. Some come with drawing shapes, but they snap into the board for storage. The Magna Doodle also comes in various sizes. Again, another great lap toy for travel
6. Coloring Books
A simple drawing pad or coloring book with a pen or bag of crayons is easy enough to keep the kiddos entertained for a while on the road. Aside from drawing and coloring, they can also write stories, practice math facts or play tic tac toe in the drawing pad.
7. Reading Books
This one’s a pretty obvious choice, but it’s a great idea to have plenty of picture or reading books available for road trips. Children can also read aloud in the vehicle for more interaction if they are getting bored reading just by themselves.
8. Rest Stops
Of course when traveling in a vehicle, it’s important to stop often to use the rest room, stretch our bodies out and get a snack and a drink. Especially with children, these stops will need to occur more frequently. Some bathroom breaks will be quick so we can get back on the road, but others can be made into a fun and slightly longer break for the kids. Several rest areas along the way will have restaurants and arcade games. If time and money allows, sit down for french fries or an ice cream cone. Let the children spend $2.00 or $3.00 on gumball machines and arcade games. Once 20 minutes or so has passed, then get back on the road. Letting the kids get out to play will help break up the monotony of sitting in a car for too long.
These are definitely a few great ideas to get started on, but the more you travel, the more creative and imaginative the road trip games for kids can get. Always practice safe driving, but enjoy the sites and have fun along the way too.
Featured photo credit: discoveryvillageacademy.org via discoveryvillageacademy.org