Hooray, it's about time to bring our children out to see the world! The world is indeed their playground, but there will always be the waiting times, the in-betweens and the early waking every morning that parents have to grapple with, even on holiday!
What toys or learning resources should we bring along for the children, then? We love resources that allow for open-ended creativity. This means we can use the same materials for different activities and purposes over the course of the trip.
Here are some of our recommendations:
1. Pack a blank notebook and colourful doodling materials!
We love the happy Ooly Range! Your children can express themselves on paper as they explore new places and take in the sights and sounds of travel.
Who says you should only doodle on paper? We love our Doodle Tiles because they are so compact and handy for travel. You get 8 three-inch square tiles, 2 six-inch square tiles and five Crayola® write on wipe off markers.
Here are some doodle ideas for your upcoming trip:
- Ask your child to draw or write about something they enjoyed from the day's travel. Snap a photo and record it like a diary entry!
- Have you child observe words or symbols they recognise while on-the-go - How about words like "Airport", "Exit", ...or even "Toilet"
- Draw a facial expression or emotion of the day (Happy, Sad, Angry)
2. Schedule in Quiet Times even when you're On-The-Go
Travelling is indeed a feast for the senses! There's alot to take in and sometimes the sensory overload might cause your child to be tired and cranky. Try to schedule Quiet Time for the children so they can pause and be still to rest from all the activity. The adults could also do with a quiet cup of coffee, if possible!
How about packing in a Calm-Down Bottle for these Quiet Times? When you hand your child the bottle, it signals to them that it's time to be still and quiet (you determine the timing for that based on your child's age). This means no running around, no talking or shouting. It's time to hold the bottle, calm down, take deep breaths....and even doze off for a nap as they stare at the swirling glitter! Try it! Building a simple routine will help everyone in the family enjoy their trip together.
3. Remember that It's okay not to see-it-all and do-it-all
When we travel with children, we must expect the unexpected (that diaper disaster or the wailing toddler who refuses to nap). In this season of life, it's okay if we don't get to all the travel sights we set out to explore. Take it slower and simpler. Enjoy the quality time together. Add in playground time for the little ones, a quick coffee and cake at a new cafe, and just go with the flow! You are still making memories because you are together.
Go forth and make memories together, even with the mess and tears included!