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Car Travel Games for Kids

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Nothing quite manages to grind on a parent's nerves as the familiar whine, "Are we there yet?"

Boredom in the car is probably one of the leading causes of roadside child abandonment. Seriously, traveling by car can wear on everyone's patience. Keeping a few handy car travel games for kids in mind can make the hours fly by and turn what could have been a trial into a highlight of the trip.    

Next time the kids start to get antsy, try one of these car games the whole family can play together. Some of them may seem overly simple at first, but you'll soon realize that the fewer the rules, the more mileage you can get out of the game. 

Name 10 Things

This game is great because it gives everyone a chance to be an expert. One person challenges everyone else in the car to name 10 things in a specific category. For example, a child might challenge the adults to name 10 Sponge Bob characters. Grownups can use the game to create excitement about the vacation destination by asking kids to name 10 rides they want to go on or 10 types of plants they might see.

Would You Rather

Get ready for some giggles with this silly road trip game. Each person takes a turn creating a scenario with two equally unpleasant alternatives. For example, you might ask, "would you rather have a nose that's two feet long or arms with no elbows?" Kids will have fun trying to gross each other out, and even the adults will find themselves trying to outdo each other.

Story Pass-A-Long

This is car travel game is good for encouraging creative thinking and narrative comprehension. One person begins by telling a story. The first person should introduce the setting and the characters. After reaching a suspenseful moment in the story, the first teller then passes the story on to the next person. The story continues around the circle until everyone has had a turn. You may find that some stories get so intricate that the kids will want to keep them going for more than one trip around the circle.

The Alphabet Game

his classic road trip game has entertained generations of kids on the move. There are two variations. For kids that know their letters by sight, simply look for all the letters of the alphabet in order on the signs, bill boards and license plates around the car. When someone spots the letter they need, they call it out and point out its location. For example, "I see 'Q' on the sign for Lincoln Square." Younger kids can look for objects that start with different letters with help from parents or an older sibling.

If I Were . . .

This is another fun travel game that encourages creativity and also helps everyone to get to know each other. This game is especially popular with older kids and teens, but it can be adapted to any age group. One person picks a job or role a person can play and then says what he or she would do in that position. Mom might say, "If I were a superhero, I would have the power to talk to animals." The next person then explains what he or she would be like as a superhero. The next person starts a new round by listing a new job/role like president, movie star, mom or a world traveler.

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