Low-Tech Fun for Long Car Trips

An iVillage Top 10

"What did we do before we had DVD players in our cars?" Lots of iVillage moms swear by their portable movie players on long car trips. But if you're a low-tech kind of family, how do you keep everybody entertained on the road? Check out these 10 gadget-free ideas from other moms.

A white board with dry erase markers — this keeps them busy for hours. I highly recommend it.

I take a cookie sheet and magnets and magnetic letters for them to play with.

Tin foil — they can mold it into shapes, kind of like Play-Doh. Also, one of our best forms of car entertainment is a big bag of pipe cleaners (also called chenille stems) from the craft section. They don't take up much room and the kids can make all sorts of things out of them — glasses, sculptures, jewelry, etc. They can keep them intact or take them apart and make something else. We've done this for years and everyone still has fun with them.

I check out books on tape from the library, and we listen to those together. The Chronicles of Narnia are good for all ages (including the grown-ups).

We made little bingo cards with pictures of things (barns, trucks, churches), and the kids cross them off as they see them.

The thing my folks always did for me that seems to work for most kids (and grown-ups too) was that everyone created their own "to-do" bag. I was given a canvas tote and allowed to put whatever I wanted that could fit into it. When I was little, it was mostly stuffed animals and activity books. As I got older it was reading books, puzzle books, Mad Libs and sometimes an extra map.

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