The home is full of disturbances to study time – from e-mail and texting to TV and video games – it can be almost impossible to get kids to spend the time necessary to master important skills. Travel time is the perfect opportunity to ignore the distractions and help your kids face an educational challenge. These tips will help identify the best travel toys and activities that are educational and fun.
Travel journals can be utilized to develop writing and spelling skills. Begin the work prior to leaving home with some research on the destination and then complete the journal during the trip. In addition to entries on best/worst/favorites, include fact based pages for the history or other interesting information about the destination city or country. For summer trips, the journal can serve as the starting point for writing a back to school essay. It may also serve as extra credit in English or History class.
Practice math facts every time you get in the car – for at least a few minutes. For lengthy trips, print appropriate fact sheets, create flash cards and play math magic games. Use dice games to add some fun into the practicing of math facts.
Go beyond the coloring book with activity books. Multi-purpose activity books will build a range of logic and problem solving skills. If there are specific areas that need mastery, look for a dedicated book. Beware of loading up on all one type of book – a mixture will entertain kids for longer and avoid burnout.
Map skills are great fit for vacations. Buy a wide variety of maps and for use during the trip. Select one map that shows the entire route. A detailed city map is useful for planning itineraries, fun activities and mapping out instructions for the day. Colorful tourist maps are fun to use for identifying unique restaurants, destinations or shopping.
Help your child use travel time productively by learning a new skill or mastering a challenging one. It takes time to find the best travel toys that are educationally based but it is worth the effort!