Children are smart enough these days, but did you know that by taking them on family vacations, you will make them even smarter? It is so true! While the latest educational toys can help improve the way kids think, a trip to fascinating destinations can do the same thing and then some. After all, one toy only has so many features, whereas each destination around the world has an unlimited number of things to share with everyone.
Here are 7 ways that taking family vacations can make your child smarter:
1. They Learn How to Budget Money
Children often get an allowance to buy things at home or they might have parents that simply get them whatever they want or need. However, vacations are the perfect way to get every child involved with the money that they want to spend. When you go on your next family vacation,
I recommend giving your child a set amount of money and telling them that that is all the money that they have to spend on souvenirs. You can then help guide them as they choose what to buy with it. The goal is to make them realize that if they spend all their money on the first day, then they won’t have any more money available for all the other cool things they discover down the road.
2. They Learn About New Cultures and Traditions
Depending on where you are traveling to for your family vacation, you may find yourself coming across new cultures and traditions. Your children will soak these things up like a sponge and will probably ask a billion questions as they try to learn more about what they are seeing and experiencing.
New cultures and traditions are normally found in other countries though, so you may need to expand your horizons a little if you want your children to be well-versed in as many as possible.
3. They Learn How to Control Themselves
Children are not born with a lot of patience but traveling can allow them to learn how to be patient. This is not going to happen overnight, but eventually they will get used to standing in the long security lines and waiting for delayed flights.
You might not see how this will make them smarter right away, but once you see them attempt to find something to occupy their time or using the downtime as a learning opportunity, you may change your mind.
4. They Learn How Fascinating the World Really is
The entire world is full of beauty and adventures, but until children see it for themselves, they will not understand it. As soon as you start exploring during family vacations, a whole new world will open before your child’s eyes and they will get excited with every new trip that you take.
You may find older children scouring the internet looking for the best things to do in the area that you are visiting, while younger children will start asking questions about what they see as soon as you arrive at your destination. As you all travel more as a family, your child’s interactions with other people, as well as their sensory and physical interactions will automatically improve. They will appreciate everything, and their knowledge will grow faster than you could ever imagine.
5. They Learn that Playing Can be Fun and Educational
At home, parents are usually too busy to spend much time playing with their kids. Yes, there’s the occasional board game on school nights and basketball or frisbee on the weekends. However, playing is often the best time for children to learn.
They learn about what they are doing, and they learn from their parents, who are right there with them. If you and your children are trying to build a sandcastle and it won’t stay up, you can try to solve the problem together. In fact, you may find that you are teaching your child how to problem solve through play and that it is much easier to do then than it is at other more stressful times.
6. They Learn How to Pack a Suitcase
So many parents choose to pack their own child’s clothes for a family vacation, but what is wrong about having your child do it on their own? I recommend handing your child a list of what they need to bring, or if your child cannot read, telling them what they need. Your child can easily take that list to their room, grab what they need and bring it back to you. You can even make a little game out of it but having them grab the first item and bringing it to you before going and grabbing the second item.
Now, this is foolproof, especially if your children are younger, because they haven’t developed the skills to match clothes yet. However, use this as a learning opportunity! Place the clothes that they bring you onto the bed or the couch and then ask them if certain ones should be changed. For example, “Hey Johnny, wouldn’t your yellow shirt go better with these black shorts than this dark blue one?” Your child can then take the dark blue shirt back to their room and bring back the proper shirt. This is also an excellent way to double check that they have grabbed everything that they need, so you don’t end up needing to hit up the stores when you get to where you are going! And if you need help picking the right luggage for your little one, our comprehensive guide to picking the best luggage for travel can make things a lot easier.
7. They Gain New Skills from a Multitude of Activities
How often do you get to go skiing at home, or surfing? If you are traveling somewhere that offers different activities than what you get to do at home, take advantage of them! All those activities will allow your children to gain new skills, while learning if they like doing them or not.
They will also gain a little more confidence, especially if they are scared to do something new at first. Imagine, how your child acted on your first family vacation and then compare it to how they act now when you travel. Can you already see the confidence that is growing inside them and how they are using every new skill that they have learned over the years to eventually become the adult that they should be?
Your children will grow smarter with every family vacation that you take, and you will notice it in more than the seven ways listed above. You will be amazed at how much older your children seem with every trip and will be thankful that you took the time to make these memories together.