Well, I can tell you first hand how much work it can be to plan a road trip with kids! We just returned from a weekend trip to Branson/ Table Rock Lake. It's a little less than a 5 hour road trip (lunch break included) and yet it took a lot of planning to keep a 4 and 2 year old kid entertained the whole way! As we traveled, I was reminded of how many great opportunities for learning pop up along the way when you road trip with kids. I was also excited to realize many of our activities included literacy learning. For the next few months, I'm going to try and pop in here on the blog and share some of our road trip reading tips. I've also started a Pinterest board for all things Road Trip Reading. Stop by for an idea or leave your Pinterest information below and collaborate with me in creating the board! I was also reminded this past week of how much FUN it can be to plan a road trip with kids!
Road Trip with kids: Tip #1
Create Child- Friendly Packing Lists
Having preschoolers underfoot while trying to pack can be frustrating. Keep your child busy, let them help with a teeny bit of the work, and squeezing in some literacy learning by creating packing lists.
Road Trip with Toddlers:
Ready: For the young preschoolers, sit with your child and write a list. Your list can be a word list or you can draw simple pictures for the items. As your child finds the item and places it in his suitcase, let him scribble the item off his list. Checkmarks are really hard, but even my two year old can scribble over my simple drawings of shirts and pants.
Road Trip with Preschoolers:
Set: If your child tells stories through pictures or words, he is set to write a packing list with a little help from an adult. Work together to brainstorm items your child might need to bring. Let your child write the list with pictures or words or a combination. You can see that my son used invented spellings. Keep the list short. My boys require a minivan full of stuff to travel for 3 days, but we keep their list to 4-5 items. Mom packs the rest later. This helps them hold their ideas in their head so they can "re-read" their writing. I like to put the items out and let my son match his written word to the item checking it off as he goes.
Road Trip with Early Reader:
Read: Early readers can do some independent brainstorming, write a list, have mom or dad check the list, and pack up.
Have fun and be safe on your summer road trips. Don't forget to look for opportunities to take reading on the road!
Here's where I am sharing: