I've been madly swamped and still am. Now I am trying to prepare for a flight. We're moving abroad with 5 kiddos ages 7 and under - 1 4 hour flight and one 15 hour flight, not including airport waiting times. I'm wondering if there are any unique, quiet toys new to the market you just love? I am seriously desperate for 'new' ideas. Two of the kids get super hyper when they are tired.
I am a huge fan of our LeapPad (available on Amazon, at WalMart, Target, or directly from LeapFrog online.) It is set up like a tablet -- has multiple cartridge games that you can purchase OR -- you can buy digital app games from the LeapFrog app store. IF you have more than one, any apps purchased can be shared between the devices (I believe up to three LeapPads can host the same app.) Our kids loved the creative center and esp. being able to take their own pictures / videos (and manipulate them with silly special effects.)
Here is the description:
Winner of the 2013 Educational Toy of the Year and People's Choice award for toys!
Create, learn and explore with the #1 kids’ learning tablet!* Built from the ground up just for kids, LeapPad2™ is kid-tough and packed with learning fun.
The LeapPad2 learning tablet comes with five apps, 4GB memory and loads of exciting features. Capture your world in two ways with two (front & back) cameras and video recorders. Draw and write on the 5" touch screen with the included stylus. Tilt and shake for motion-based play, customize and care for your very own pet, and create masterpieces in the Art Studio.
Explore LeapFrog’s educator-approved** library of 800+ games, eBooks, videos, music and more on a durable tablet designed for kids! Play with game cartridges or download apps—the choice is yours.
Build reading confidence with innovative book apps that provide a fully interactive reading experience with visual say-it, sound-it support and state-of-the-art gameplay. Play learning games that draw from 2,600 skills and that adapt automatically to challenge kids at their level. (Book apps and learning games sold separately.)
Parents can also connect to the LeapFrog Learning Path to see the details of their child’s play and learning, including levels achieved, skills practiced and recently played games. Celebrate accomplishments with online rewards, and gather ideas to support and expand the learning.
Includes 1 year limited warranty. For details, see http://www.leapfrog.com/warranty
LeapFrog Learning Difference
The LeapPad learning tablet family is the only kid’s tablet with exclusive access to LeapFrog’s educator-approved** library of 800+ apps, games, eBooks, videos, music, and more using research-based teaching methods.
Meant to add that they can turn off the volume or wear headphones with it.
Other ideas would be to pack each child their own backpack with new crayons, coloring book, books to read or look at (depending upon ages), small 'travel size' games such as "Guess Who" for older kids, or -- if you have the energy, maybe create your own games using ideas from Pinterest.
One last idea - maybe you can find books / games native to the country you are moving to that would be "new" to the kids?
Whew -- moving abroad sounds like quite the adventure! I hope that you will fill us in on how things are going when you can!
With my oldest, I found anything electronic (leap pad, movies, my nook) have worked over the age of 2.5. She also likes the no mess Crayola markers and she only gets it traveling. Age1-2, I find horrible and just get through it somehow.
Make sure you have snacks because that is more limited on planes. Drinks they are pretty good with if you ask. My daughter also has issues sleeping sitting up not in her car seat and on our last 8 hour flight she had a 30 minute meltdown about wanting to lay down to go to sleep. Not sure what to do about that but maybe her own blanket would have helped.
Not sure how long your layover is but ask if there is a good area for kids. Last week we were stuck for 6 hours and one of the employees told us about a play area that was fantastic (for an airport). The seating area around it was huge and no one was there so the kids ran around and burnt lots of energy. They had loads of fun and it made the waiting much better than I thought it would be.
DD1 July 2008 (41w3d)
November 2010 (13 weeks)
DD2 August 2011 (33w5d)
Thank you both! I thought about the leappad but they are coming out with a newer version this month. We have an ipad so maybe that will suffice if they take turns nicely...little chance of that. I am seriously thinking of the leappad. Would you recommend that over buying a lower quality tablet? I say lower quality but I mean in the hundred dollar range compared with an ipad.
Pretty much we worked on our tickets so that we have very little layover time in NY before the long flight. I will check if JFK has any kind of play area for the time we are there. I haven't heard of them having it but maybe, let's see.
Definitely pack each child their own backpack with snacks, water bottle or sippy (especially with little kids who aren't so good with the flimsy paper cups they hand out on planes), entertainment, etc. I just have two kids but when we flew with my husband we were in two rows and it was a PITA to pass things back & forth. Each ticketed passenger is allowed a carry-on, so take advantage of it! My kids love to play cards (Go Fish, Snap, etc.) so I packed those to play but they were honestly so excited to be on an airplane that they didn't even bother with them.
And get them each a set of EarPlanes. Those things are freaking genius. You can't always find the kid size even at places that sell the adult size so call ahead or just order online & have them shipped.
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