Greystone House Montessori Schools Houston, Texas. Child care Montessori provider in Champions, The Woodlands, Spring Texas Greystone House Montessori Schools Houston
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CAR TRIP SANITY
Many times holidays mean a long car trip. We’re hearing all kinds of bad things about using electronic devices as pacifiers, and the fact is that this is an incredibly fleeting time with your family. Here are some suggestions not only to survive, but to thrive on those trips:

• Sing along – Preschoolers don’t care about your voice. They just want to connect. If you have audio music, pop it in. Finger movements and clapping songs are great. Our songbook at the school is full of common songs if you’re having trouble remembering the words. This is a great time to teach your children nursery rhymes and funny limericks.

• Games – It’s the connect thing again. Lots of naming games, like kids' names, animals, toys, or foods, can be easy enough for 4’s and older. Another one is “20 questions” where you give clues of the thing or creature you’re thinking of. You can judge how easy or hard to make it. For example, “He lives at the North Pole” is a fun clue. Spotting games are fun, too, like who can see the first cow or who can find the most dented fenders. Pick an item and think of all the things you can do with it. For example, a “shovel” can be used to stir a giant stew, play tennis, use as a catapult, etc. You’ll be amazed how creative you can be. It’s called higher-order thinking skills.

• Story building – Start a story, then let the next person repeat your part and add their own part. The next person repeats the whole story and adds their part. Let your ‘silly’ run wild on this one.

• Activity boxes – Assemble activity boxes for the kids. Older kids can make their own. If you’re the one doing it, make sure it has things they haven’t seen in a while and things they like to play with. Manipulatives without too many small parts work well. These are nice things to have with you once you get to your destination.

• Books – Coloring books, activity books, and story books all work. Story books that you can read aloud and maybe discuss get that connection thing going. Books with lots of complex pictures and great artwork are wonderful.

• Snacks – Healthy snacks don’t have to be monitored. Your children can eat as much as they want if it’s all nutritious. Dried fruits, nuts, and dry cereal don’t have to be chilled. If you can have a cooler, fruits, vegetables, water, and juices are nice.

• Breaks – Plan to stop often. We found that we could line up roadside parks just past a town, stop in the town for take-out, and then take a break where the children could run and yell for a half-hour. It became such a treasured custom that we still do it even though we’re no longer traveling with children.

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