The holidays are approaching — are you ready? Like it or not, retailers are packing up or have already packed up Halloween decor in favor of Thanksgiving and Christmas items. The holidays are big business for retailers and big headaches for some parents. If you are planning a road trip with little ones for the upcoming holidays, you may already be feeling a little bit stressed out.
Any parent will tell you that having a car full of children is distracting. Having even just one child in the car can be a distraction. Parents will also tell you that they don’t want to spend hundreds of dollars to buy their children items that will occupy them as they travel down the road. The good news is that keeping kids quiet in the car doesn’t require high tech. In fact, keeping kids well behaved in the family car only requires a bit of creativity and some planning.
Here are just a few ways that you can keep kids of all ages quietly sitting in the backseat as you hum along down the road enjoying blissful sound of nothing but road noise.
Audiobooks are great for kids. Even if your child does not have their own portable device, you can play the book over your car’s speakers. What’s an hour or two of a story compared to your sanity? You may think that you would rather pull your hair out than listen to one more children’s story, but there are actually some very good options on today’s market. Check a few out and see which you can enjoy along with your children.
2. Window Clings
Provided your children can reach the back passenger windows safely, window clings are a great way to keep them entertained. You can easily find clings at online retailers if you can’t find any in the local store. Your kids can place and replace the clings on the windows for as long as it will keep them entertained. Challenge them to come up with stories for their scenes and have them write the stories in a journal.
Speaking of journals, younger kids can document their trip in a blank spiral-bound notebook. Give them a blank notebook, some stickers, colored pencils and crayons and have them detail the journey. You can also give them a paper map to cut out and tape into their book. The options are virtually endless when giving this project to your little ones. The great thing is that it can be tailored for older kids as well.
4. Physical Games
Think of games that will get your kids moving in the back seat. Rocks-papers-scissors, spot the out-of-state-plate, the alphabet game and more will keep your kids’ minds moving and their bodies from becoming fidgety. These games aren’t the best option if you want the car to be perfectly quiet, but you will prevent the kids from fighting for a little while.
5. Other Games
You can find versions of games that are easily played in the car. Magnetic board games are fantastic, and you won’t have pieces flying around your car if you hit a bump. Mad Libs is a fun choice and there are tons of card games that kids can enjoy with each other. Another easy idea is to give your kids a cookie sheet and a small puzzle. They can put the puzzle together on the cookie sheet and the edges will keep loose pieces from sliding off.
Sit down with your kids before the big trip and come up with a playlist that you can download onto your smartphone or MP3 player. You can avoid the eye rolling and the inevitable feelings of “being old” by allowing your kids to have some say in at least some the music selection. By preloading the music, you avoid fights in the car about what is going to be played next.
Being in the car for hours with the kids is rarely on the top a parents’ list of favorite things to do, but it is one of the most inexpensive ways to get a group of people where they need to go. Use the tips above if you and your family are planning on driving down the road and through the woods to Grandma’s house this year or anywhere else for that matter. By the time you arrive at your destination, you will be happy that you took the time to come up with ways to keep the kids occupied.
If you are involved in a car accident in Miami, with or without the kids in the car, you may be entitled to compensation. Call our team of car accident attorneys and schedule an appointment for your free case evaluation. We will review the details of your case and advise you of the options available to you under state law. Call today for assistance.