If you have kids over 5 and you’re set to travel, you’re certain to be dreading downtime. Because downtime can lead to overtired kids having breakdowns when there is nothing to do. Believe me, I know.
So for our latest vacation, I grabbed 2 games that were small enough to fit into crevices in my suitcase, and they were certain to please.
This very clever card game is a great way to reinforce math, strategy and memory skills while still having fun. The goal is to get the lowest possible sum of number cards before your opponent. But you have to remember what your cards are as you trade cards, because they’re turned over! It didn’t take long for our five-year-old to learn the strategy involved in playing this Gamewright game. For less than $10 and eligible for free shipping, there’s no reason not to get Rat-a-Tat-Cat.
A simple game of pick-up sticks is entertaining enough, but add sight words on each bamboo stick and it becomes a learning game, too. In addition to the hand-eye coordination and fine-motor skills involved in pick-up sticks, the extra step in Pick-Up Words is to say the word on the stick. You can play many variations, our favorite was a’ la a billiards game: the player has to announce the word prior to picking up the stick.
We’re headed away again in a few weekends, and they’ll be packed away and ready to play again.

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