Word Games for Travelling with Kids

Here's a selection of fun word games for when you're travelling with kids. They'll help keep them entertained when you're on the road, while also helping them develop skills.
Word Games for Travelling with Kids

Last update: 23 June, 2018

For small children, long car rides can be pure torture. As a mother, you can make the trip more entertaining by teaching them some fun word games.

Playing word games while you’re travelling presents the perfect opportunity for parents and children to have fun together. What’s more, you’ll kill time as you make your way to your destination.

Small children have short attention spans, so bringing toys and planning activities will keep them occupied and happy on family trips.

Word games are great because they help kids practice concentrating on sounds and letters. They also develop necessary reading, writing and spelling skills.

Remember that even a car ride can be a great chance to further your little one’s development. We’ll give you some examples below.

Word games on the road with kids

In order to make your next long trip with the little one the best possible experience, give this selection of word games a try.

1. I Spy

This game is easy to learn and perfect for preschool-age kids, as it can keep them entertained for incredibly long periods of time.

The instructions are simple: one person “spies” something and recites the line, ending with a clue: “I spy, with my little eye, something red.” The rest of the people in the car take turns trying to guess the mystery object.

2. Location

For this game, a player sees the name of a place and says it aloud. The second participant has to come up with the name of another place that starts with the last letter of the first place.

For example, the first player might see a name on a street sign and use it. The next player can say the name of any place that follows accordingly. The game continues in this fashion.

Word Games for Travelling with Kids

3. Story with an unknown word

This game allows you to have a lot of fun while challenging your child‘s creativity. Think of the most descriptive word you can and ask your child to tell a short story or build a sentence based on that word.

If he or she doesn’t know the meaning, you can explain it, or combine it with the definition game. This way, you’ll allow your child to create a meaning and fashion a story around it.

“Sometimes, there’s nothing but a very thin door separating children from what we call the real world, and a slight breeze can open it.”

–Stefan Zweig

4. Alphabet lottery

First, you must write all the letters of the alphabet on a piece of paper. Then, number the letters and leave spaces for the kids to write next to each one.

To play the game, they have to come up with things that start with each letter. They’ll start with “A” and work their way to “Z.”

Due to the scarcity of words starting with “X,” they can use any words that contain the letter. The first child to finish the list wins the game.

5. The story begins

This is a perfect option for fostering your child’s untapped gift for narration. The game can be played in two ways. In the first, one person starts the story with a single word, and the next player has to add the next word, and so on.

The objective is to avoid being the person who stops the sentence or the story.

The other way to play is to broaden the scope from a word to a full sentence. Each successive player then adds another sentence. Let’s see where the story goes!

6. Crocodile

To start, you need to choose a subject, then the first player has to think of a word. The next player needs to find a word that begins with the last letter of the preceding word.

If the word ends with “E” or “S,” you should try to use the second letter of the preceding word. Spelling plays an important role here, especially when the words end in silent letters.

Word Games for Travelling with Kids

7. Animal, mineral, vegetable

This game can be incredibly short, or go on for years, depending on how creative the players get. It consists of thinking of an object and establishing whether it’s an animal, a mineral, or a vegetable.

The other participants can ask up to 20 questions, to which the player who has thought of the object can give only yes or no answers.

It can be rather complicated to guess the object when you consider that a wooden table is technically vegetable in origin, or that a leather shoe could be classified as technically animal in nature. This, however, simply adds to the fun.

Finally, we remind you that the car’s driver must not participate in these word games for travelling with kids. It is important that he or she doesn’t get distracted. The other passengers, however, can enjoy hours of fun with these simple activities!

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Santamaría, F. A., & Bothert, K. (2011). Relatos de niños y niñas: juegos de palabras que crean y recrean vivencias. Infancias imágenes, 10(1), 66-73. https://revistas.udistrital.edu.co/index.php/infancias/article/view/4465
  • Muñoz, L. (2015). Los juegos de palabras como estrategia didáctica para desarrollar la producción textual en los niños del grado 4, de la institución educativa nuestra señora del Pilar del Municipio de Aldana. http://sired.udenar.edu.co/857/
  • Paltán Soldado, J. N. (2016). Los juegos de palabras para la compresión lectora en los niños y niñas de cuarto año paralelo “A”, de educación básica de la Unidad Educativa Juan de la Valle, cantón Riobamba, provincia de Chimborazo, año lectivo 2015-2016 (Bachelor’s thesis, UNACH, Sede Ecuador). http://dspace.unach.edu.ec/handle/51000/1576

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.