With Memorial Day weekend upon us, many families are loading up the van and heading out on the highway for a long weekend at the beach or grandma’s house. According to AAA, nearly 35 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more from home during the long holiday weekend. For parents, that means being stuck in a small enclosed space with a bunch of kids whining about how they are stuck in a small enclosed space.
While it may be easy to cure the boredom blues by throwing on a portable DVD player or giving your kids extra batteries to keep their handheld video games going, if you have children who are prone to carsickness and can’t stare at screens while the vehicle is in motion, then creativity comes in handy. Snacks and songs can only keep children content for a little while. When the novelty of edible goldfish and string cheese wears off, consider the following classic car games:
Alphabet Geography: This tried-and-true travel game goes by a number of similar names, including “geography lesson.” Whatever name you choose, the object of the game is the same. To start, have the first player think of a geographic location, be it a city, state, country or continent, and then have him say it out loud; for example, “Wisconsin.” The next player then has to think of a place that begins with the last letter of “Wisconsin,” such as “North Pole.” Then, the next player says a place that starts with the letter “E.” Players may not use the same location twice and all of the places must be real.
I’m going to Bombay: This simple memory game can be played by kids of all ages. The first player starts, by saying “I’m going to Bombay and I’m going to take…” and then names an item beginning with the letter “A,” such as an apple. The next player follows by repeating “I’m going to Bombay and I’m going to take…” That player repeats the previous player’s item and adds a “B” item, such as “balloon.” Each subsequent player repeats the phrase and lists all previous items in order, and adds an item beginning with the next letter. Anyone who forgets an item is eliminated from the game. The person who completes the entire alphabet wins.