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It's that time of year when we all pile into the family car and head off on the great family holiday road trip. Here are some ideas to avoid "are we there yet" and screaming kids!
Pen and paper required.
Everyone in the car chooses a colour. Nominate one person to be the counter. As you drive past cars you call out if the the colour of the car is yours. The person with the pen and paper makes a mark under each person's name every time their coloured car drives by. At the end of the trip the person with the most marks under their name wins. (It's a good idea to exclude white cars from the game as we seem to drive a lot of white cars in Australia and this gives someone an unfair advantage).
An oldie but a goodie! One person looks around and chooses something from in the car or outside it, that the others have to guess, with their only clue being these words: "I spy with my little eye something that begins with (insert the first letter of the object's name)." Or the clue can be the object's colour. The player who guesses the clue takes the next turn. You may need to set a rule that the thing cannot be something that the car has already driven past - it's not really fair to spy something that your car has flown by at highway speeds.
Count the cows
No matter where you drive in Australia you are more than likely going to come across a cow or two. Get the kids to count how many cows (or sheep or windmills) that you drive by on your trip.
VW Bugs aren't that common on Australian roads. See who can spot the most of them on your journey - maybe each time one is spotted that person gets a treat out of the lolly stash!
If you have an Ipad or similar, load it up with movies, games and apps. These will keep the kids occupied for ages. Obviously if you only have one, it will need to to be shared along the journey or else you will end up with a tantrum or two; or one of your passengers will have a strained neck by the end of the journey!
These days portable DVD players are as cheap as chips. Buy ones with ear phones, that way everyone can watch their favourite movie in peace and quiet and the driver won't be distracted by the noise. If you car doesn't come with inbuilt DVD players you can also purchase head rests with DVD players in them - just swap over your old ones for the new ones and your passengers in the back can be entertained for hours.
Books, Colouring In Pads, Stickers
Younger kids can always occupy themselves with colouring in, reading and sticking their favourite stickers on paper. Keep a big stash in the front with you so that you can throw some back when your back seat passengers start to get bored.
Hopefully after doing some of the above activities your back seat passengers may have a nap just in time for you arrival at your holiday destination.