5 Musical Car Games to help the miles fly on your next roadtrip.

5 Musical Car Games to Help the Miles Fly

We love playing games in the car! It really helps pass the time, and sneak some learning into our travels. Here are five of our favorite musical car games:

1. Musical ABCs

We played this one for the first time recently, and it was an enjoyable challenge. The task? To sing a song that starts with each letter of the alphabet.

So we started with A Whole New World from  and sang our way down to Zacchaeus.

We Googled the lyrics as needed, and we did skip two letters–Q and X.

Here are the rules we used:

  • The song’s title had to start with the given letter.
  • We had to recognize the song (so we couldn’t just Google “songs that start with X” and pick a random one)
  • Any genre was fair game. We sang hymns, songs from movies, theme songs, and more.

2. All the Songs From

Musical movies are what this game is about! We tended to pick Disney movies, just because that’s what we knew most of.

Here’s the goal:

To sing all the songs from a given movie.

So if you were to pick Frozen, you’d sing all of its songs. You know:

  • Frozen Heart
  • Do You Want to Build a Snowman
  • For the First Time in Forever
  • Love Is an Open Door
  • Let It Go
  • Reindeers Are Better Than People

Then pick another movie and start from the top.

We did use Google to look up lyrics.

3. Songs with the Word…

For this game, you take turns picking a focus word. Then, you all name songs that contain that word.

So, if you pick “Tree”, you could list:

  • O Christmas Tree
  • Way Up at the Top of the Apple Tree
  • If You Get There Before I Do

And tons of other songs that contain the word tree somewhere in the lyrics.

Here are the Rules we Used:

  • If you named a song, you had to be ready to sing the section of the song that contained the focus word
  • No Googling (just relying on brain power & memory!)
  • All versions of the focus word were included–so trees counted as tree

4. Line by Line

Pick a song that most players know the word to. We found Theme Songs worked well for a variety of ages.

One person sings the first line of the song. The next player sings the next line. Continue taking turns until you reach the end of the song.

5. Themed Sing

Take turns naming a theme song. Then sing it as a family.

Continue taking turns until you can’t think of anymore theme song lyrics.

We decided that different versions counted as different songs. So we sang several different Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle songs. It made the game last longer, which is what I was going for.

We did Google lyrics after we named a song. We didn’t allow Googling of theme song titles.

Do you play musical car games? What are your favorites?

I’d love for you to share your favorite musical car games in the comments section below. We’re always game for trying a new one!

Looking for Other Car Games?

Check out my other posts for even more car game ideas:

ELA Games to Play in the Car

Math Games to Play in the Car

Have a globe? Here are five fun learning activities with one.

5 Fun Ways to Learn with a Globe

My mom recently blessed us with a globe. The kids all love spinning it, looking at all the different countries, and trying to be the first to find Washington State, where we live.

A globe is a great learning tool. It can inspire learning across a variety of ages. Here are a few of the activities we’ve enjoyed with the globe so far.

1. Country Research

My oldest child is 14, and loves researching. So as a challenge, I’ve had her spin the globe with her eyes shut and one finger on it. Whatever country she lands on when it stops is what she has to learn about.

Since it’s summer and we’re definitely doing low-key school, I just have her share with me verbally a few facts she learns. It’s been a fun way to learn more about the world around us, and how people in other countries live.

My younger kids love drawing pictures about what we learn about. They’ll listen to their sister describe a country, and they’ll try and draw something from there. They usually pick food or houses to draw.

2. Find the Oceans

Did you know that since I graduated high school we’ve lost a planet and gained an ocean? It’s kind of funny how that stuff all works.

Anyways, I have my middle kids try to find all of the oceans. Can you name all five?

  • Pacific
  • Atlantic
  • Indian
  • Arctic
  • Southern

Southern is the newest one.

This activity leads to great discussions about ocean life, what a beach is like, and more.

3. Find the Continents

Unless I’ve really missed something, there are still only seven continents. 😀 I’m glad that some things stay the same.

The kids take turns finding continents. On our globe, they’re marked with the largest letters so it’s easy for even the younger kids to find.

4. Pray for a Country

Each day of the week at my house is assigned to one of the seven kids. On their day, during our morning Bible time, they get to spin the globe. Whatever country their finger is on when the globe stops is one they take time to pray for.

They pray for any missionaries who might be serving there, and for the people to come to know the Lord Jesus Christ.

It’s a simple way to introduce a missions mindset to the kids, and to talk more about religion around the world.

5. Letter Hunt

My little one who will turn five later this year loves looking for letters. I let her go to town hunting on the globe. She loves trying to find all of the letters A-Z in order.

It’s a good way to keep her busy for a few minutes. 😀

Do You Have a Globe?

What learning activities do you enjoy with it? I’d love for you to share in the comments section.

Photo Credit via Unsplash

Do your kids love bubbles? Here are 10 different learning activites to try with your kids.

10 Learning Activities with Bubbles

My kids love bubbles! I think most kids do–they’re beautiful, floating balls that you can reach out and pop.

If you’re looking for different ways to incorporate learning into your summer days, I encourage you to bring out the bubbles. To inspire you to get started, here are 10 different learning activities with bubbles.

The bubbles are so much fun the kids don’t even realize they’re learning!

Some of these activities need a bubble machine. Others just use a good old-fashioned bubble wand. Use what you have!

Here are 10 different ways to learn with bubble play:

1. ABC Bubble Run

Put just a bit of bubble solution in your bubble machine and turn it on. The kids are set for their have to run through the bubbles, singing the ABC song.

Once they reach the end of the song, they start over again at A. They get a point each time they complete the song.

Since no one knows exactly when the bubbles will stop, they have to sing as fast as they can to get points. It’s a great way to practice the ABCs at a different speed!

2. Count & Pop

While the bubbles are coming out full blast,challenge your kids to pop as many as they can. As they poke each one, they have to keep track of how many they pop.

Counting practice anyone?

3. Bubble Rhyme

As your kids run around the yard, run after them as you blow bubbles. When one of your bubbles hits someone, give them a word.

They have to come up with a rhyming word. If desired, you can also pass off the bubble wand.

4. Sight Word Bubbles

A little bit of prep work is required for this one, but it’s great practice for early readers. Use a sharpie to write sight words on a bunch of index cards. Now, lay them out on the grass.

Let the kids take turns blowing bubbles with a bubble wand. They have to read the word that one of their bubbles lands on first.

You can keep adding new cards to keep this game fresh all summer long.

5. Addition Practice

One person blows as many bubbles as possible while everyone else counts how many there were.

Then another person blows more bubbles. Count those ones as well, but start over from 1.

Now, add the two numbers and see how many bubbles there were in all. A fun way to practice addition!

6. Watch the Wind

To aid in a weather study, you can use bubbles to help you “see” the wind. Just set up your bubble machine on a windy day.

Then, talk about which way the wind is blowing. See how hard it’s blowing. After a while, start looking for other signs that it’s windy. Perhaps you’ll notice the trees moving, or the grass rustling.

7. Adjective Practice

Once the bubble machine starts putting out a ton of bubbles, ask your kids to think of as many words as possible to describe what they see.

This activity expands vocabulary, and helps your kids learn more about adjectives. Here are some of the words my crew thought of:

  • sparkly
  • round
  • wet
  • glistening
  • gliding
  • floating
  • clear
  • big
  • tiny

There’s many ways to describe a bubble!

8. Bubble Art

Mix up some of your own bubble solution using dish soap, water, and food coloring. You’ll actually be mixing three different batches–one for each of the primary colors. You can use plastic cups or pie pans to make your solution in.

Now let your kids blow bubbles onto white art paper. Let them experiment with different colors. As the bubbles pop, they leave behind a neat, colorful effect.

You can talk about secondary colors if you have any of the primary colors touch.

9. Bubble Experiment

The kids have exactly 5 minutes to round-up as many things around the house and yard that they think will make bubbles.

Once they bring back their collection, pour your solution into a large pie pan. Then let the kids take turns dipping in what they found and trying to make a bubble.

Here are some we’ve tried:

  • An old-fashioned metal potato masher
  • A slotted spoon
  • A lid for a bucket that had a hole
  • A wire coat hanger bent
  • A plastic bracelet
  • Their finger and thumb bent into a circular shape

For the scientific piece, have your kids each make a prediction about each item. Then test their theories and talk about what you need to actually make a bubble.

10. Frozen Bubbles

Carefully blow some bubbles onto a plate covered in plastic wrap. Then, working as quickly as you can, stick the plate in the freezer.

You have to walk carefully, as you don’t want them to pop.

Close the freezer door, and ask your kids to draw a picture of what they’ll find in 1 hour. You’ll get their brains going!

In one hour, go pull the plate out. Was what you found close to what the kids thought they’d see?

How Do You Bubble?

Please share your favorite bubble activities in the comment section below–I can’t wait to try out more of them with my kids!

Photo Credit: Sebastian Pichler via Unsplash

Are you getting bored with regular Hide and Seek? Check out these variations to spice up playtime a bit.

10 Variations of Hide and Seek to Enjoy with Your Kids

My kids love playing hide and seek! But the regular version gets pretty boring at times. That why we’re always trying out new variations.

I wanted to share 10 of our favorites with you. Try one of them out the next time you’re looking for an active activity for your family.

1. Hide and Goal Seek

When you combine traditional hide and seek with tag you get this game! The seeker closes his eyes and counts like normal while everyone hides. Then, he goes to find them.

The hiders have one goal–to get back to the home base without being tagged. We always use our flagpole as base. You’ll want to pick a spot that’s easily accessible in several directions.

If the seeker tags the hider before they make it back to base, that hider is out. If they make it to the base, they’re safe.

2. Sardines

I was first introduced to this book in late elementary school when I was reading one of the Babysitter’s Club Little Sisters books. Karen played it with some friends.I’ve enjoyed it ever since!

Sardines are packed tightly in a little tin can. That’s the point of this game–to cram everyone into one hiding spot.

One person runs off to hide while everyone else counts. Then the seekers split up, and try to find the hider. When they do, they silently join in hiding. The game continues until only one person is left looking. It’s a ton of fun!

3. Wave

The newest version in our arsenal!  One person counts while everyone else hides.

As the seeker finds someone, that person has to tag along with the seeker. Except, if the extra person spots another person hiding, that person can wave at them.

That wave frees the extra person to run away from the seeker and go hide again. When everyone has been found and is still tagging along, the round is over.

It helps to have eyes in the back of your head for this one!

4. Themed Hide and Seek

This one is a little different. One person picks a theme, and then everyone who’s hiding has to follow that theme. It sounds confusing, but it’s not once you give it a try. Here are some of the ones we’ve used, hide:

  • By something green
  • Inside of something
  • With another person
  • Under something
  • In a bedroom
  • In the barn

It shortens the game play a little bit by really narrowing the hiding spaces available. Sometimes a short game of hide and seek is nice!

5. Hide the Button

I remember my Nanny playing this with my sisters and I way back when. So many memories!

It’s a different variation because nobody actually hides. Instead, an inanimate object (like a button) is hid.

Everyone else tries to find the button. It’s best to limit this one to a single room, making it perfect for a rainy day.

6. Blindfolded Seeker

The game Luigi’s Ghost Mansion (part of a game on the Wii U) inspired this version of Hide and Seek. Since you need a blindfold, it’s best played indoors.

It gets blindfolded . Everyone else hides around the room.

The seeker has to use the senses of listening and touch to track down where everyone is hiding. It’s a fun way to spend some time!

7. Walkie-Talkie Hide and Seek

A field trip in middle school was my first introduction to this variation of the game. We took a trip over to the Washington Coast, and were spending the weekend by Fort Casey.

The chaperones and the kids enjoyed a great round of walkie-talkie tag. We broke into two groups, and were each equipped with a walkie-talkie.

One group ran to hide and the other group had to find us. We could use the walkie-talkies to give clues, or send the other team on a wild-goose chase. It was loads of fun!

Now that we have a set of walkie-talkies, the kids and I have played a couple of times. The seekers favorite question is, “Let me hear what you hear right now.” The hiders hold the button on their walkie-talkie and broadcast the background noise for a few seconds. There are often clues in those noises that help everyone to be found!

8. Flashlight Hide and Seek

What do you do when you have a power outage on Christmas Eve? You play flashlight hide and seek of course!

We waited until it was dark (which didn’t take long in December!) and then gave the seeker a flashlight. Everyone else ran off to hide.

The seeker used the flashlight to find us. Sort of spooky hiding in the dark, but really fun! You could hide in really obvious places and as long as the flashlight beam didn’t hit you the seeker would never know you were there.

9. Water Balloon Hide and Seek

A fun summer twist, the seeker has a bag of water balloons. His job is to hit you with one when he finds you. If he misses, you get to run to base.

If you make it back to base, you get to throw a water balloon at the seeker! The kids love it!

10. Link Up Hide and Seek

For link up hide and seek, the seeker links arms with the first person she finds. Then the two stick together while finding someone else.

Player three also joins in the link-up. Continue until everyone is linked up by the arms. It’s pretty hard to move easily with so many people attached!

How do you play Hide and Seek?

I’d love to hear your favorite version of this classic game in the comments section below. We’re always game for trying a new one!

ABC Pancakes

ABC Pancakes & Easy Letter Identification Games

My young kids love playing with ABC pancakes. Now don’t worry–I’m not letting them get all sticky with syrup and butter by playing with real pancakes.

Nope.

They’re using pancakes I whipped up on the computer. I made a basic template by copying and pasting a circle over and over again in Word.

When I printed it, I made sure to print enough copies that I ended up with 26 circles. I actually got 30 copies since there were six pancakes on each side, but they had fun writing their names on the extras.

How to Make ABC Pancakes

Once you print the pancake templates, let your kid cut them out. They don’t have to be perfect (the real pancakes I make rarely are either), and it’s a great way to practice fine motor skills.

Then, give your child a marker. He’s going to write a mommy letter on one side of each pancake, A-Z. On the back of each pancake, write the same baby letter. So one pancake will have A on one side, and a on the other. Another will have Y on one side, and y on the other.

Once the pancakes are lettered, have your child color them. My kids decided to use brown so they looked like actual pancakes, but there’s no reason your child has to. Let them use their imagination if desired! Just be sure you can actually read the letters when they’re finished.

When the pancakes are ready, have your kids pick up the scraps. Now they’re ready to play! You’ll need the pancakes they just prepared, and a spatula.

Scramble the cards, and lay them out on the table. Here are three different games to play, that’ll help with letter identification:

ABC Order Stack

Have your child use the spatula to lift up the letter A and place it in a nearby spot. Next, they need to lift the letter B and stack it on top of the A. Continue until there’s a stack of 26 pancakes in ABC order.

Flip Over

Pancakes need to flip! Have your little one say the name of a letter, and flip it over to reveal the mama or baby of the same letter. Kids need repetition to help them remember, so making it fun helps!

Order Up!

Let your child try her hand at being a short order chef. Go up to the table and “order” a stack of pancakes with three different letters. You might say:

I’d like a stack with Y, W, and B today please.

Let your child stack up your order and read the letters back to you.

Take turns being chef and customer. You can always use fewer or more pancakes to keep the game at an appropriate level!

Want some pancakes of your own?

Here’s the template I whipped up. It’s super simple, because if you’re looking for fancy you’re at the wrong blog.

ABC Pancake Template

If you print it out and play, I’d love to hear how it goes in the comments section below!

Photo credit: Elli O via Unsplash