By Guest Blogger Monisha Iswaran
There’s really only so much you can learn in a classroom setting - life experience is the true teacher that we should all make the most of. The more different experiences and types of exposure you involve your kids to the more likely they are to turn out to be well-rounded, mature individuals. Not to mention, travelling as a family is known to be great for bonding and you will likely feel closer to each other by the end of the trip. So bear in mind that vacations are well worth the expense, and are more than just a good time. Here are 5 things your little ones will learn from travelling at a young age:
Want your children to broaden their skillsets and learn to do simple things for themselves quicker? Travel is one surefire way to do so. When you are busy moving in and out of hotels/accommodation, kids often have to occupy themselves or help with the transition process. This results in kids who are more attentive, helpful and involved, rather than sitting back and hoping that adults do all the work. Encourage your kids to help out as much as you can rather than telling them to get out of the way - this way they will learn heaps of skills.
The more different places your child gets to visit, and has to learn to exist in (albeit for short periods of time), the more adaptable they learn to be. This can be in terms of adapting to different living conditions, weather, culture of people, language etcetera. One of the most important skills of any professional or personal setting is being able to respond well and get along with a variety of people, no matter the circumstances. However, especially when your little ones are young, try and make their travel experience as comfortable as possible. Cots are portable and convenient, and having a familiar sleeping spot can be soothing to infants and toddlers, especially if you are travelling for long periods of time.
3. Going Technology-Free
Travelling is the perfect time to go technology free, and teach your kids the joy of tuning out from such devices. The sad thing is in this day and age most kids are overly attached to screens - ipad, televisions, iphones etcetera. Often times when travelling, good wifi spots are few and far between. Therefore, take a technology cleanse as a family - no emails from work, no sending selfies to friends…. And you might just find you teach your kids the art of work-life balance in the process. Dolls are a great way to entertain kids without having to tune into the internet. It’s how kids stayed amused before video games and Netflix so why not go old school?
Who can honestly say that they’ve been on a trip where every single event has gone as planned. Plans get messed up and that is simply life! Going on a trip as a family definitely teaches children the art of patience, particularly when things aren’t going your way. From missing a plane to getting stuck in a particularly bad traffic jam to losing luggage - dealing with disappointments and difficulties is a good skill to have!
Is there really anything more fun than heading out on a great open road, to explore and discover more than you ever knew was possible? Not for those of us bitten by the wanderlust travel bug. For most it is something they want to pass on to their children, as some of the best memories you’ll ever make will be on your first solo trip around Europe, or backpacking with friends, or with a group of strangers you meet in a foreign country and become mates with!
Travelling from a young age as a family treats children to the joys of exploring new countries and unfamiliar territories. Chances are they won’t want to give that up and will be doing exactly the same things with their young ones in a few decades.
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Penny, an avid Trip Advisor Reviewer, is the author of ITCHY FEET FAMILY. A family living in Adelaide, Australia, and taking every opportunity to travel and explore the world.