I Pad v’s I Spy

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Whilst travelling from Dublin to Cork over the long weekend I was struck by the amount of children glued to I pads in the back of cars whilst families headed off for some quality time together. It got me to thinking, shouldn’t quality time start from the beginning of the journey and not when you reach the destination? One of my very vivid memories as a child is travelling in the car with my brother and my parents. Impatient groans and endless “are we there yet” questions were always met with the suggestion of yet another game. “Let’s see how many red cars we can count between now and the next town”; my dad would suggest enthusiastically. And off to work we would set, a fierce competition ensuing, both my brother and I vowing to be crowned the champion. Then onto “I spy with my little eye… “ followed by an inventive game after game until we eventually hit our destination, usually still on speaking terms and in high spirits; having had many laughs along the way. My recent journey left me feeling a little sad. Yes, you ask any busy or tired parent in need of a break and many will probably cite the invention of the I pad as one of the greatest of our generation. However; you ask any adult in 20 years to recall their memories of childhood car journeys and I wonder if many will have much of a story to tell.

Why Play?
Evidence tells us that children learn about the world through play and let’s face it, learning is fun. So too is quality time and interaction with family, even those reluctant to join in, will end up having fun — even if they try to never let you know!!
Why not make some lasting memories — try my top 5 retro car journey games next time, and give Peppa Pig, Paw Patrol and Batman a well-earned holiday of their own.

Top 5 retro car journey games
1. I spy with my little eye — no explanation needed;
2. The counting game — Let’s see who can count the most red cars, shops, trees between A to B;
3. The Car Reg game — who can write down the most car reg numbers in 10 minutes;
4. Memory game — I’m going on holiday and I’m going to pack…. list 10 items — who can remember them all….;
5. The Bon Bon game — who can keep a Bon Bon sweet in their mouth longest without chewing.
By Elaine Fagan. Find us on facebook @ just bee children’s centre or on twitter at Justbeecc

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