MSN had an article on waiting games for children – restaurant, plane, long lines and cars. The full article can be found here. The author is Barbara Rowley and her bio from the site is “[her] most recent book is Baby Days: Activities, Ideas and Games for Enjoying Daily Life With a Child Under Three.” Sounds like a wonderful book.
The article was full of fun ideas, but one really caught my attention. This is from a Nancy Kay of Nashville:
[P]uppets or stuffed animals to go along with a story on tape. The kids can act out the plot while listening to the story — and keep the baby entertained at the same time.
I adore books on tape (or rather CD or Digital books). My daughters (ages 6 & 3) are loving listening to Mary Pope Osborn’s Magic Tree House Series on tape, read by the author. She has a sweet voice and my kids really get into the stories. I will periodically stop the CD and ask questions to see if I need to clarify anything, or to check their understanding of the story line.
I also think that it is a good way to teach and practice the reading skill of foreshadowing. (What just happened? What do you think is going to happen? etc.)
A friend of mine said that she just buys a bag of pipe cleaners and lets the kids go wild. She said that the things that they create are amazing. I think that it’s a great idea for stretching the imagination!
I also give each of my daughters a cookie sheet and I have a bag packed full of activities – coloring books, toys, books, car-friendly crafts, etc.
The cookie sheet is a perfect table for anything car-activity imaginable and also doubles for a snack-tray when needed.
If all else fails, then I bring out the movies. I try to work out all other possible options first though – including music appreciation, scenery watching, and car games.
Our favorite car game is a modified “I spy”. Modified, because my girls are on the younger side, so instead of saying “something that begins with the letter…,” we say “something that is …” and list a color.
What kinds of things do you do?