Things To Remember When Driving With Children
Let’s face it, children complicate everything (in a good way of course!) Driving in a car is no different. Driving is of course one of the most dangerous things you can do, so there is tons to remember when driving with your children. Below are some basic precautions to take anytime you travel with your children in the car.
Follow All Laws
This one may seem very obvious, but there is more to it than just using car seats. The laws and requirements that are in place for traveling children are there for a reason. They are backed by science to show that children of certain size, weight, and ages require different things. So even if it may seem ridiculous to not allow your 10 year old out of a car seat, if the law says it, you should do it. You shouldn’t put children in the front seat until they are of the legal age and size in your state. Finally, you should make sure your children are wearing their seatbelt before the car starts to move. It is easy to expect an older child to buckle themselves in, but sometimes they forget or don’t see the importance of it. So it is a good idea to check all your children’s seatbelts before backing out of the driveway.
The car is no different than any other place in the world; children need to be kept busy. This can be a more difficult task when they are confined to such a small space, especially on longer trips. While an in-car DVD player or entertainment screen is a great option, there are plenty of other ways to keep the kids busy. You could try any of the classic road trip games like the license plate game, singalongs, hangman, tic tac toe, etc. Another idea is to bite the bullet and listen to whatever music your children want. There will be a lot less complaining if they have to scream over their favorite song, so sometimes this is a good place to start. No matter which method you choose, we don’t recommend expecting them to enjoy a long stare out the window!
This is another one that will certainly be an inconvenience to you, but will be worth it in the long run. You need to essentially decide if adding a few minutes to your trip is worth being able to ride in more peace. Stopping at a rest stop or just pulling into a field and letting the kids run around is a great way to tire them out for the rest of the trip. This method usually works great for the dog too! When the kids get back in the car they will (hopefully) be tired and more calm for the duration of your ride. It is a good idea to plan a few stops and not let the kids ride for hours straight like you would do without them.
As a parent, you are certainly tired of your children’s dependency on technology. You don’t typically want to encourage more technology time, but it really is great for the car. Even just giving the kids your cell phone and letting them play their favorite game can keep them busy for hours. If you have tablets or iPads, it is a great idea to load them up with tv shows and movies for longer rides. So even though you might be hounding the kids to stay off their technology, you might want to do just the opposite in the car.
Doing anything with kids can really be a challenge. Keeping everything organized, safe, and fun in the car is one of the hardest tasks for a parent. Try out some of the tips above and it should make things just a little bit easier!