Driving games are going out of style. There are so many things to keep children occupied in the car now days that families have lost their connection to each other while driving and riding in the car. Either the music is up loud and conversation is avoided or cell phones provide an alternative conversation source instead of talking to the children in the back seat. You can give the kids electronics to keep them quiet, DVD players, IPods, Nintendo DS, etc…
Next time you find yourself driving your car with the kids in the backseat, try turning off the radio, confiscate electronics and have a conversation or, better yet, play a driving game. There are so many to choose from and its easy to make up your own. A game my son and I play is the ABC game. This game you can use license plates or signs to find all the letters in the alphabet. This can be fun and tricky when you get to funky letters not often used so much. There are number games, where you pick a number and find other numbers that add or multiply to make that number.
These types of games get a family interacting together, starting conversations and also staying alert to the road. Youre not on the phone, or listening to loud music, your child has not tuned you out and stared at a screen. This is a bonding moment, riding in the car together. And its also a learning moment. Depending on the age of the child, you can pick a game thats suited to them, and they can get something out of it.
Think back to when you were a kid and in the car with your parents. There were conversations, talks about family members, school and work. Sometimes this quiet can allow adults to have great conversations about different things going on in the world today. And the children can learn from these conversations, as long as they have not turned their brain towards their Nintendo or DVD player.
Yes, Ill admit that its nice sometimes to just have the kiddos sit quietly in the back seat occupied by a movie or a game. Having quiet time driving or listening to the radio is sometimes nice and relaxing, however this can be done when youre alone in the car. I would challenge you, when in the car with children, to turn off the music and electronics and turn on your brain and work on the relationship you want to build with your kids.
There are so many driving games you can play; dashboard scrabble, where you pick letters from the environment to make a word; scavenger hunt games, give each child a list of things to look for and you get a point for each item seen on the side of the road; imagination games, where you make up stories about people driving in the cars around you or houses you pass by; twenty questions is an oldie but a goodie and kids always love this game.
So many options when it comes to driving games, give it a try here or there and I promise it will be fun for the whole family and everyone will get something from it. Turn off the electronics and have some family fun while in the car together. It turns out to be a real treat.