It is a well-known fact that toddlers and long journeys usually don’t mix well. Toddlers love to move about and get restless if they know they have to sit still for too long. Running about in the backyard is all well and good, but if you’re travelling on a train (or any other vehicle) jumping about could have dangerous consequences. But who will explain that to them? A great way to ensure that they don’t create a lot of fuss is to provide them with a good distraction. Toddlers just want to be entertained! If you are able to plan a few games or activities ahead of time, your journey will be a breeze. Here are a few ideas to help you out:
- Carry books: Books provide a quick and efficient distraction to toddlers! Carry along a few board books or interactive books for your toddler to flip through when he is bored! Make sure that they are not ones which he has read before. However, it might be difficult for some kids to focus on the words on a moving train; you can carry along with you a few audiobooks (on your phone or iPod or mp3 player). Many sites which offer a wide range of children’s book, so you’ll have your pick of them.
- Go for a walk: A good thing about trains is that you can walk up and down the aisle. Taking a short walk around the train will not only help your toddler (and you!) to stretch out their legs but will also offer a nice change of pace.
- Bubbles:Blowing bubbles is a timeless activity; the adults love to do it too! Opt for a bubble wand or gun, so that the experience is mess-free and your toddler doesn’t end spilling bubble solution all over the train seat!
- Music:A good way to keep them entertained is to make a playlist of their favourite songs ahead of the trip and having them listen to it. Make sure to carry headphones and to not let them listen to the entire playlist at once! Listening to songs can be a fun little ‘break’ for them!
- Pack Snacks: Make sure that you have packed plenty of snacks (that they like) beforehand. Give them snacks that are light so that they don’t end up feeling queasy and pack plenty of drinks too!
- Pack Toys:Carry a separate tote bag or kiddie bag that are filled with some of their favourite toys (and that are not very noisy if you want to avoid dirty looks from other passengers). You don’t want to unpack and rifle through half of your luggage on the train to look for them.
Bring out the tablet:Don’t feel too guilty about taking out your tablet or iPad to keep your little one entertained. A little TV time or online games won’t hurt anyone, especially if it’s a long journey and you have exhausted all other ideas! Most online games meant for toddlers are quite educational, so don’t worry about ‘spoiling’ your kid.