It is that time of year when parents and grandparents are looking for gifts for their cherubs that will remain of interest long after the last holiday cookie is eaten. For me, those gifts are ones from the heart and usually have a “theme”. This year I would like to propose giving the gift of “exploration” to a child.
Imagine your child learning about the world beyond their front doors. Where they can learn about different states, countries, or even space! Package books, a globe, a telescope, maps, arts and crafts activities, and even games for a multidimensional gift that will bring enjoyment (and sneak in learning) for years to come!
Maybe take these ideas for a “spin”…
Travel to the stars and beyond!
Have you ever spent more than a few seconds looking at the stars? Wondering what happens on other planets? In other solar systems? Here are some ideas for kids to learn more about the world beyond Earth.
A little “planetary” humor! This t-shirt can be a conversation piece and a party favorite! via Quality Appearance on Etsy
Pack Your Bags!
Traveling can be a challenge for children and their parents. After all, who loves the chorus of “Are we there yet?”. Not me! So, here is an idea to keep kids busy and parents sane. Wrap up small ‘gifts” to be dolled out during the trip on the half – hour of hour mark. Intersperse what kind of activity is presented. Coloring books, small electronic games, clever puzzles like a Rubric cube, card games, magic activities, and games that are a spin-off of family favorites such as “license plates” – all work! Here are some of my favorites –
Special Places to Visit!
It is no secret that I love, love, love to travel! That is why when I found out about the Familius’ travel series for young readers that teaches interesting facts about states and fundamental skills (such as counting or the ABCs) – I am more than willing to share that information with all of you. (Yes, the publisher sent me copies of the books – all that I will give away!) Each book is different. There is no formula that is repopulated for each version. Instead, the author highlights key places such as ZION National Park for the Utah edition. This is a great gift for kids who are traveling to these states to “prep” before they land. Note that colors are matched with the “state theme”.
This year, Familus Publishing, gifted me with books that had Christmas themes, as well. These are not your ho-hum little kid’s books. Like many titles from Familius, these are written on two levels – with grownups AND kids in mind!
Case in point … The 12 Little Elves series is a hoot! I laughed for quite some time when I saw the Little Elves negotiating freeway traffic inside the California edition. (If you have ever sat in traffic on “the 405” you would be hysterical laughing, too!) For their full state collection click here. I also asked our friends at Familius to consider other holidays with slightly different characters, too!
Under the Sea!
Sneak in learning through technology
Here are some ideas to keep your teens and tweens happy, including while driving. We all know that this age group is glued to their phones – so why not give them constructive tech activities? Consider having your ‘co-riders’ track distances between points along the route, thus sneaking in some math and reading skills. Next, have them snap photos and organize them into folders with the goal of creating a memory album or photo book at the end of your journey (executive functioning skills are the bonus here!). And, to help with these endeavors try CANVA (education tab) and photo companies such as Shutterfly or Snapfish.
Now Your Ideas?
Do you have a great gift idea that maybe has educational and is large on the “fun value”, too?
Special Note: I do not receive payment for any promotions you see on this page. The most I am afforded are a few free games or books from publishers for review. I only add these books, games, etc. if the products are deemed of fun and educational value. If you see them here – they passed “my test”! Amazon is where yu will find the majority of what you see here. Familius Publishing is a company that I have an ambassador relationship with – but in all honesty – their products are TOP NOTCH!!