Are you going on a family vacation anytime soon involving a road trip? Here are some great ideas for having fun together in the car!
Alphabet game. Everyone looks out the window and tries to find objects beginning with each letter of the alphabet, starting with A and working their way, in order, to Z. No one can call out the same object. The first person to reach Z wins!
Guessing game: Who am I? Decide upon a category (animals, plants, famous people, etc.). The person who is “it” has to think of a specific example from that category. Everyone else in the car has to ask yes/no questions until someone guesses correctly. The person who guesses correctly takes the next turn.
- I spy. The person who is “it” looks around and picks something in sight. Then they give the rest of the family a clue about what they’re looking at. For example, they might say, “I spy with my little eyes something that (starts with the letter _____ or is __________ color, etc.). Everyone looks around and asks questions about what the person has in mind until they guess it correctly.
- Find 3 (fill in the blank). You could decide to find three vehicles of a certain brand/model, or three signs with a certain word on it, or three things of a certain color.
Fantastical Story Time! One family member starts off telling a story and stops in the middle of an idea. Another person continues, then stops, and so forth until all the family members have participated.
License Plate Games
- Try to find a license plate from each of the 50 states.
- Try to find a license plate that starts with each letter of the alphabet, in order.
- Look at a license plate and copy all the numbers included on the plate onto a piece of paper. Then see how many different math equations you can develop using those numbers! When you finish, move on to another license plate.
Scrambling Road Signs. Watch for signs along the side of the road. When you find one, copy the text down (if there’s a lot of text, pick few words). Then see how many other words you can form by scrambling the letters from the sign.
- One person hums a tune and the rest of the family tries to guess what it is.
- One person starts singing a song, and the rest of the family has to guess the title and who wrote it.
Paper Games: your kids can easily play hangman and tic-tac-toe with just some blank paper and a couple of pens.
Activity Books. Your kids can make activity books for each other (draw pictures to be colored, create word searches/crossword puzzles, etc.), then switch and complete each other’s activity books!
Travel Kits. Make individual travel kits for your kids in advance. Give each child a portable (closable!) container (box, pouch, case, etc.) and allow them to fill it up with travel friendly entertainment items like crayons, papers, blunt scissors, paper dolls, small plastic toys and deck of cards – anything mess free and portable that they can engage with during the trip.
- Bring along a stack of postcards. Divide up your family friends and relatives so between all of you, everyone gets written.
Writing a Book. Come up with a plot as a family and write your “book” altogether, or have a little quiet time while each child comes up with their own story.
Journal Time! If your kids don’t already have personal journals, get them some before the trip. During the car trip they can write reflections about what they’re looking forward to (on the way there), and what they experienced (on the way back).
Geometric World. The world around us incorporates a lot of different shapes, lines and angles. Review common shapes and types of angles. Everyone can then look out the windows and try to find different shapes, lines and angles in the landscape.
Trip Sleuthing. Select places you will stop along the way in advance. Give your kids a map and a few clues, and have them try to guess where you’re going to stop!