ACTIVITIES FOR YOUNG
Article by Mary Emma Allen
Photos by Kathleen Walls
This young fellow learns about transportation
an earlier era at the Buggy Museum Mifflinburg, PA
Traveling can be fun and educational for young travelers
if adults have activities for them. Also, instead of
putting them solely in front of movies and games (on
computers and iPads), draw their attention to sights along
"No way," these young electronic wizards complain. "That's
Some youngsters seem to need an electronic device as soon as
they enter the car. These are fine to while away the time
for part of the trip. However, they're missing out on so
much if they're unaware of the world around. It does take
some effort on the adults' part, but is worth it in the long
With direction and enthusiasm, these activities can be
fun and create memories in later years. Also, you can
combine various activities with electronics for maximum
|These girls learn about
reptiles at Audubon Park Zoo in NOLA
- License Plates -
Write down the various license plates you see while driving
or at rest stops. Youngsters also can note any slogans or
state nicknames found on the plates. Are their any designs
on the plates?
- Notebooks for Journal
Writing - Provide each child with a notebook in
which they can write down their impressions as they go
along. Also use it for writing down states and the various
items below. Or they can use a laptop word processing
program for doing their writing.
- Counting Wildlife -
In some areas there are more animals than others but looking
for these can be fun.
- Looking for Various Birds
- Birds vary in different parts of the country.
- Notice Wild Flowers
- Flowers, whether wild or growing in a yard, can be noted
- Stop for Historic Markers
and Make Notes - This is a great way to learn about
the country you're passing through. When traveling with our
daughter we became interested in following and researching
the Oregon Trail after seeing a marker with information
about it. This led to side trips, research, and interviews
with people along the way.
- Download Bird, Flower and
Wildlife Guides, as well as historical
information on Electronic Reader. This is a way to combine
electronics with the sights along the way.
- Sketch Pad - Some
youngsters like to draw pictures as they travel. This can
be done in their journal or a separate sketch pad.
- State Capitals -
Look for the capital cities in the states you travel
- Taking pictures on
cell phones for their own use or to post on social media to
friends can be entertaining. Also, they can send photos via
e-mail to friends and share the activities of the trip.
Watching dolphins at Florda's Marineland is more fun
Rest stops and restaurants often have wireless connections
nowadays. So you can look up information about the various
activities you're involved in and the area where you're
Combining the tried-and-true activities for involving
youngsters in travels with today's electronics adds
excitement and enjoyment to any trip.
How do you entertain young people you're traveling with?
(c)2013 Mary Emma Allen
Mary Emma Allen writes from her New Hampshire home and
while traveling. She has traveled alone, with her husband,
with her daughter and friends and with her grandchildren and
has seen changes in the ways to keep youngsters engaged in
the enjoyment of the journey.
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