Vacations are times to unwind and let down your hair but when you have planned for one with family and kids, it adds to the excitement if you do some advance planning. This is apart from buying flight tickets and making advance hotel reservations. If you plan well enough it will be a great learning experience for the kids when they see the photo of a work of art spring to life at an art museum that you visit. Once they can connect in person to what they have seen in books and films, they will doubly enjoy the trip.
Regardless of whether you are planning a trip to show your child something new or to supplement her education so that they get more out of the vacation, here are a few tips to make the experience unique and novel for them.
- Books on the destination – These need not be travelogues only though that surely helps as an introduction to the place. Fiction and historical fiction will do as well. For example for a tour of Spain have your child read Don Quixote. Climbing on to the statue of Don Quixote and Sancho Panza in Plaza de Espana in Madrid will be doubly exciting. If it is a trip to the National Parks, National Geographic’s National Park Mysteries will be of great help.
- Pictures and maps of the destination – Show them pictures and maps of the places you will visit either from books or online. Pull out maps and trace the route of your travel. They can connect better to the direction and course when you move from place to place. If you introduce them beforehand to the highlights of the destination like museums or art galleries they can have a better perspective and enjoy the moments more.
- Play and learn – Find out what games or apps are there for kids to play and learn about various sights at your destination. Simply navigating through them on a tablet or iPod will prepare them mentally for the trip. Moreover, if you are travelling to a place where English is not the primary language, have them pick up the basics of that language at least (and so should you). You can tap into foreign-language work books mobile apps or even podcasts to achieve your goal.
- Preparation of report – You should encourage your child to prepare a report on the holiday that can be presented in class after return. Once the groundwork is prepared at home before departure, things will fall in place after real life visual impact, further adding pizzazz to the presentation.
Follow these tips and make your vacation a once in a lifetime experience for your kids.