This past week, Tristyn and I took a family road trip from the Garden State of New Jersey to Atlanta, Georgia. The drive is about 13 plus hours. Here are tips that helped us survive:
Prior to Departure
In preparation for our Trip I prepped Tristyn’s favorite sandwiches, his favorite snacks and goodies, froze some box juices and water to alleviate food stops.
I packed a “Toddler Tool” bag consisting of a variety of reading books, travel coloring books and crayons, his favorite race cars, action figures and of course the IPad.
I also packed Circle Time cd’s, kid friendly Jazz and a Sesame Street themed cd I personally made through YouTube. I also included a comfortable blanket a throw pillow to support his sleep.
Hours into the ride, we enjoyed singing a few familiar songs; The Wheels on The Bus, ABC’s, Days of the Week, Counting Fingers and Toes and The Five Senses song. Singing these songs engaged us, while reinforcing the learning tools that he is used to on a typical school day.
When I began to drive, the iPad kept him entertained. Listed below are the top 5 apps I personally sought out, played and found him using consistently and enjoying throughout the entirety of the trip (ordered of like-ability).
- Disney Junior Appisodes (Free/in app purchase)
This app is an interactive episode play. You are allowed one free episode (Mickey Mouse Clubhouse) The Appisode requires your child to follow a directive that focuses on learning bits that help the characters move along through the episode. In other words, that awkward moment of silence when you and your child are watching a show and the characters are asking open ended questions waiting for a response; this app allows them to participate. You are able to speak into the iPad, swipe to help achieve a number count and much more.
- Fisher Price’s” Laugh & Learn Learning Letters“(free)
- Fisher Price’s “Storybook Rhymes Volume 1″(free)
This app is a read along sing along. It encourages the learning of both “One, Two, Buckle My Shoe” & “The Itsy Bitsy Spider” classic nursery rhymes. It also offers two modes; sing to me (3 months+) read and learn (2yrs+) which allows you to pick a preference for your child.
- Fisher Price’s “Laugh & Learn Shapes & Colors”(free)
- ABC Alphabet Phonics(free)
This app focuses on identifying uppercase and lowercase letters. This app allows you to be more personal by adding your voice, adding your own photos etc. (through purchase.) It’s easy to navigate through and helps build the confidence of the child when they are able to identify the letter.
*None of the listed apps needed wifi and there was no pop up ads to distract the child while playing. Buying the apps however does give you a bit more lead way in personalization and preference*
Overall, the 13 hour plus drive was a breeze, Tristyn was preoccupied with so many things throughout the ride. We colored together, played with the toys listened to sing-a-longs and much more. With the right pre planning you will be on your way to a fun filled Toddler Road Trip.