Add On-the-Go Fun for Kids! More than 250 Activities to Keep Little Ones Busy and Happy – Anytime, Anywhere! to your family packing list and don’t leave for your summer vacation without it. We are definitely going to keep a copy of this book handy with us as we embark on all those planes, trains, and automobiles this summer (not to mention doctor’s appointments, family reunions, and dining out adventures). Amanda Morin’s book contains more than 250 activities to keep the whole family happily occupied whether you are taking a trip around the world or just around town, and On-the-Go Fun for Kids features a wide-range of games, puzzles, brain teasers, and activities for a huge variety of ages.
On-the-Go Fun for Kids! has ideas for every step of your family vacation, from activities such as making car window art with dry erase markers and designing a license plate on a long drive, to creating a fun hotel scavenger hunt once you arrive at your destination and making your hotel room into the scene of a (non-flammable) campfire scene. My own tots never seem to tire of I Spy, but they will love trying new activities while we’re eating out, like jelly packet Jenga and drawing faces on our fingers to use as impromptu finger puppets.
Morin, an education writer and special education activist, also offers several smart tech game options. My Little Suitcase, for example, allows kids to plan out their own dream vacation. The focus of the activities, however, is almost completely low-tech, yet ingenious: having your child circle all the items in the in-flight magazine that she would buy if she had a million dollars or imagining a variety of fantastical situations and finding out how he would react. Older kids will pass the time with the geography activities, games that involve pop culture and music knowledge, word searches, and crossword puzzles.
Our favorite part of the book isn’t a particular game or activity (although there are quite a few ones we can’t wait to try): it’s how Morris gets us to rethink the “in between” times we spend in transit or waiting for the real action to begin. Instead of fearing the inevitable “Are we there yet?” or “Why is our food taking soooo long?”, we can creatively use those chunks of time for learning about our surroundings, playing simple and amusing games, and engaging our children’s creative minds to stretch and grow, even if they are restricted at those times in how much they can actually move around.