Keeping kids entertained in the car: |For what it's worth

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Keeping kids entertained in the car:

Grand back seat "selfie".
It's summer here and we're in the car a lot traveling back and forth between my house, the family farm and the grands houses.  I love taking them with me which means they need to be busy in the car.  As the summer wears on, we're having to come up with new and different things to do along with some lessons learned "don't do" things.
This road side park is on hwy 287 in Texas

  • start a travel bag that stays in the car
  • pads of paper or spirals stay together better than loose pages, just saying
  • plan to stop at least every 2 hours for restless child and potty breaks
  • use old digital camera/ipod/cell phone with camera to play photo scavenge games (you can delete all the pictures of their feet and the back of your head later, that's the wonderful thing about digital) Check our "green scavenge" here.
  • print out maps and let them keep track of where you are (this keeps down that question "are we there yet?"
  • take advantage of those great road side parks 
  • take cups with lids and straws to minimize spills
  • take healthy snacks and limit the sugar (sugar usually creates excessive energy!)
  • color books and map colors (don't do crayons...they melt when left in the car)
  • draw and erase boards from the toy department
  • magnetic boards with game pieces, and paper doll characters (you can make these yourself)
  • cut out facial features from magazine ads for magnetic game board
  • music players with headphones
  • books on tape (I found several at a local resale shop)
  • if you have a recording device, let them record songs or stories they tell
  • finger knitting supplies (good directions for kids at this site)
  • keep a cooler with ice packs to store snacks (no melty chocolates!)
  • take a wild flower or plant identification book, press leaf or flower samples between the pages where they are identified
  • take an insect identification book too, for that digital camera scavenge
  • purchase or make sewing shapes such as leaves, flowers, whatever.  These are best made of cardboard with holes punched around the edge.  Use shoelaces or yarn with the ends taped to "sew" them together.
  • take clothes pins and make a yarn line from door to door or between the head rests in front of them to hang creations
  • purchase some window clings (they work on car windows for story telling)
  • remember to take a list of medications, doctor contact #, allergy list, safety kit (band aides!) baby wipes, sanitizer, paper towels, sunblock, insect repellent, hats, sunglasses, etc. (in my case, I also take a permission form from the parents to seek medical attention)

There are tons of things to do once you get started making a list or stroll down the toy isle at your local store.  Tell me your success stories.

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