Big Bangs Come in Small Packages
- What: Packable Entertainment for Kids
- When: 18 months to 8 years
- Why: Quiet, compact, affordable
- Where: Amazon
Got a big trip coming up for the Easter holidays, spring vacation, or any other long distance travel? Want to keep your kid(s) busy and happy, yet quiet and not bothering you or any other innocent passengers? Maybe you need to navigate that tricky age difference where one kid still sleeps in the car and the other never shuts their eyes. No matter what your circumstances, one – or all! – of these packable, non electronic entertainment options will fit the bill.
Brain Quest: For kids who can read, grab a brain quest deck and let them at it. With more than 300 questions to answer at the lowest level (the number of questions only goes up from there), they can pick and choose which ones they answer, and learn the ones they don’t know. These compact decks pack up easy, and because the cards connect with a single hinge, kids can swing them out without risking losing a card or getting them out of order. Brain Quest offers decks for younger kids, too, but you’ll have to help by reading some of the questions if they can’t do that for themselves.
Imagine Ink Activity Books: If you want all the fun of coloring without having to pack a marker in every color, look no further than these invisible ink books. They come in a wide variety of themes, and each page offers a new challenge, be it a maze, matching, or just plain coloring fun. The one marker, which fits into the plastic case, reveals all the different colors, shapes, and more when kids use it to color the pages.
Water Wow Books: If you need even more coloring options, Water Wow can be your new best friend. These magic pens fill with water, and then paint the pages to reveal the colors. Once again, you can get them in a variety of themes to suit just about any interest. With sturdy pages, kids won’t need a hard surface to complete the pages. Best of all, once the water dries, kids can start all over again filling in the pages with colors.
Kumon Books: Kumon books offer a range of skills for the younger jet set, including coloring, stickers, cut and paste, and folding. I personally like the folding and sticker books for traveling, because you don’t need any extra supplies. You can tear the sheets along the perforations while waiting at restaurants, in long lines, or even in route. Kids can fold along the lines, and if it doesn’t work, they can unfold and start over again. The stickers can’t be as easily undone, but still offer lots of good hand eye coordination practice that makes next to no noise.