Ask the Teacher: trip tips

We have a long driving vacation planned, and it seems like a good opportunity for reinforcing some school skills. What can I do other than give my son workbooks and books to read?

Traveling certainly does present many opportunities for learning, and hours confined to a car turn riders into a captive audience. Plan to create a documentary of your trip. Your son can take pictures each day and then write interesting captions for them in the evening or during the next day’s driving. He could also choose a theme for his photos, like a letter of the alphabet, and snap pictures of places or things that begin with that letter.

Take along books about the states you will be traveling through to read as you go, which can make the journey more enjoyable. At each rest stop, pick up brochures about area attractions. Read through them together for reading practice. If your son reads well, he can create a trivia contest based on what he reads in the brochure to challenge the rest of the family.

To build some math practice into your travels, have your son make some basic calculations along the way. When a sign appears on the highway that gives the mileage to upcoming destinations, have him determine how many miles are between two of the places listed on the sign. Ask him to calculate meal costs by using the prices on restaurant menus. After a gas station stop, he can help determine the mileage you are getting on your trip.

Most importantly, stay in vacation mode and find ways to keep learning fun!

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