Tips on Occupying the Kids when you are out and about
Whether you are heading to the airport, catching a train or are planning a long car journey a little bit of forward planning as to how you can occupy the kids will definitely help whatever form your journey is going to take.
And in fact it is not just while you are on your way somewhere that tempers can be tested, it is also when you arrive somewhere and you have to wait…and wait … and wait. You know the sort of the thing, restaurants, waiting for the doctor or dentist etc.
So if hanging about time is driving you nuts, here are a few simple ideas to help keep the kids busy and stop you from tearing your hair out.
Car Journeys – a few simple games to be played which need no props.
- Count how many cars you can see of a certain colour, make or with a registration number beginning with a particular letter.
- Who can spot the most minis – and when they do shout Mini.
- Play the “Yes No” Game. Everyone asks a question and the person who is IT can not use the words Yes or No.
- Memory games. I packed my bag and in it I put….Each person packs an item and everyone has to recount the items back in order.
Car Journeys with props
Have a dedicated “car” or “hanging about bag” which you keep stocked and available to occupy the kids as and when it is needed.
It always a good idea to have a pack of cards, crayons or pencils (felt tips can be too messy), colouring and puzzle books, and a pad of paper. Quizz books are also an ideal item for the Hanging About Bag too.
Reading Books / Comics
Noughts and Crosses.
Listening to CD’s can be fun
Instead of the kids watching a DVD why not hire a CD from your local library or buy a CD that you can all listen to while you are driving along.
Roald Dahl stories appeal to adults and children – and that is what you should be aiming for. Not something that drives the adults in the car mad. See a selection here:
Travel games – buy the mini travel versions of traditional board games.
The following is a good investment: 6-in-1 Travelling Games Compendium
Have a picnic. Rather than eating at expensive service stations, pack a simple picnic that the family can eat while you are on the way.
It goes without saying that the driver should not be too involved with the games or eating!
Hanging About time in Restaurants can also be a nightmare and can end up as quite a stressful experience..
Use your “Car and Hanging About Bag”
Play spoof with coins. Everyone is given three coins and on the command of spoof holds their hand out with any number of the coins or none.in their hand. Everyone has to take it in turns guessing how many coins in everyone’s hands adds up to. The loser is the person whose guess is the least accurate. They then are out. The game is repeated until you there is one person left in.
Pass the Pigs. Worth investing in this as it something you can slip into your handbag and is so much fun to play whatever age you are. Probably not good for cars though as you need a table or flat service to see how the pigs land.
Number games can also be great fun for when you are “hanging about”. And is a fun way to help kids with their sums as are card games.
Let me know your ideas for hanging about games. Then hanging about can be fun and a good bonding time not stressful for you and the kids.