Traveling with kids on long road trips or plane rides can be a challenge. Even if you come up with a long list of brilliant ways to keep them busy, you're still likely hear the “Are we there yet?” question at least a few times. That's always fun when you have hours to go 'til your destination!
Recently I came up with an “Are We There Yet?” Countdown Kids Travel Chart for our road trip to the beach. This little chart really saved my sanity! It creates a visual amount of time for kids who can't tell time by looking at a clock.
Countdown Kids Travel Chart Supplies:
• Scrapbook paper (size of a regular piece of paper)
• Stick on lettering (optional)
• Velcro Dots
• Small piece of paper or objects (to be attached to velcro dots)
• Way to laminate your paper (check out the Scotch Thermal Laminator)
• Hole Puncher
• Small plastic bag
• Dry-erase markers
• Timer (use your smartphone)
1. The first thing you want to do is pick your paper (theme papers are fun), your marker colors, stick-on lettering colors, etc.
2. Choose whether you want your paper to be vertical or horizontal.
3. Write or use stick on letters at the top of your sheet to write “Are We There Yet?”
4. Below that write: “Destination” and draw a line beside it so you can fill it in every time you go somewhere.
5. Below that, write, “How Many Squares Until We Are There?”
6. Next, I cut out 16 squares of paper (velcro dots come in a pack of 16) and glued then in rows at the bottom of the page.
7. At this point, laminate your travel chart (check out the Scotch Thermal Laminator)
8. Place one velcro dot on each square. I attached the other half to green paper flower table scatters (I had them leftover from another project). You can use buttons, shells, legos, or any small object.
9. To finish my travel chart, I used a hole punch to punch a hole in the corner of my page, as well as the small plastic bag. Then I sealed all of my small green velcro flowers into the bag and used a ribbon to attach it to my chart.
I used a dry erase marker to write our destination in the blank. Then I wrote the number of squares it would take us to get to our destination. I decided to do the elimination method for my kids: I pulled 7 velcro flowers from my bag and attached each one to a velcro square.
I explained to the kids that I was going to set a timer for 30 minutes. Every time the timer would go off, we put a flower away and counted the flowers. Zero flowers meant we are there! I paused the timer during bathroom stops. You can also make adjustments for heavy traffic.
This chart made our trip a lot easier than trying to explain to a 6-year-old and 3-year-old how long it would take to take to get to the beach!