5 Lessons Travel Can Teach Kids

Recently I have been steeping out of my comfort zone with my four kids and taking roadtrips across Florida. Having four kids, ranging from 8 to 10 months, planning is a must. But I am looking at the larger picture when on these roadtrips and really seeing the lessons that they are helping me teach my children. It is a lot of planning, coordinating and scheduling but the rewards are so worth it. Just get out there and go see what a beautiful world we live in!

Marisa Langford and her kids on Daytona Beach.
Marisa Langford and her kids on Daytona Beach.

1. Patience. Roadtrips are so much fun, but yes, there is patience involved. We schedule about 3 hours of road travel and we stop when we need to. If you’re heading on a road trip, bring travel games, coloring books, and the token DVD player to keep kids entertained. There are some downloadable car bingo printables that are fun too! We play a game call 50 plates, where we tried to find different license plates from each state! The time in the car is fun together and they will practice patience which is always something to be worked on in today’s society of instant gratification.

2. Seeing things you read about in person is cool. Before our trips, we researched all the cities we would stop at and see. We looked up landmarks, hotels, pools and anything else we would see in real life. Once we got there, the kids loved seeing what they saw on a computer in person. It’s so much easier to have your kids write a research paper on a state that they have actually seen! But they can’t see it unless you take them.

3. Being flexible and changing plans teaches adaptability. The world is constantly changing. Kids need to learn to go with the flow and adapt to new environments.

4. Manners. You will be eating in restaurants, meeting new people and kids need to learn to behave in public settings!  I think it is important to teach kids that there is a time and a place to run around like a chicken and when to sit quietly and behave.  Manners are important to learn at early ages and it is never to early to start.

5. You grow as a person when you are out of your comfort zone.  Get out and go see something.  Go do something.  It is not only good for the kids, it is good for us too.  I love planning trips for us to head out on.  It’s an adventure.  It’s fun.  And we end up making memories that we will be able to talk about forever.

Marisa Langford a local Tampa mother to 4 kids under 8. She founded the Fit Kids Playground Project in Tampa, FL in 2008 because she felt kids needed to know that play is a way to keep their bodies healthy. Her mission, simply put: Real Kids. Real Change. Really Simple. Through the online resources and community events that are produced by Fit Kids Playground, kids and families are encouraged to live healthier lives. Currently, she is a We Can!* Community Leader for the NHLBI, a Truck Farm fleet operator for Truck Farm Tampa and Food Revolution Ambassador for Jamie Oliver. Marisa has also received national recognition for her work as the 2012 award winner of the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition- Community Leader Award. Fit Kids Playground was also awarded the 2011 & 2012 We Can!* National Assistance Grant for the Playin’ In The Park project in the Tampa Bay area. She was named finalist for the 2012 Tampa Bay Business Journal Business Woman of the Year as well as a finalist for the 2011 Tampa Bay Business Journal Up & Comer award, all for her Fit Kids Playground project. She has also successfully secured over $30,000 in grants and private funding to help keep her community project alive! She is an active Mom on a mission.

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