Car Games

Laura from the United Kingdom is an au pair in New Jersey, USA.
Laura from the United Kingdom is an au pair in New Jersey, USA.
Photo courtesy of InterExchange

Keeping children happy during long car rides, car pools around town, or rides on public transportation can be challenging. One helpful approach is to engage them in car games - games that can be played by children ages three and up from the safety of their car seat or seat belt. These games come in handy when boredom sets in and is a great way for non-native English speakers to learn new vocabulary!

I See Something

This is the easiest game for young children to play. Choose something that both you and the child can see and start by giving a clue by saying, “I see something … (then say its color or shape). The children then take turns asking you questions about what you see. You can only answer with yes or no. The person who guesses first can be the next to give the clue, or you can just take turns so everyone gets to play if there is more than one child.

Twenty Questions

Similar to the previous game, this game is for any school-age child. One person thinks of something and identifies it to the other players simply as a person, place, or thing. The players take turns asking questions that can be answered with a yes or no. After 20 questions are asked, if the players have not already guessed the answer, each player gets a chance to make a guess. Then a new player chooses something else for everyone to guess.

Alphabet Game

Children who are reading and can easily see out the window of the car can play this game. One child starts and has to find a word on a sign visible from the car that starts with the letter A. The child has to identify where the letter was spotted. Players take turns until the alphabet is complete. You can decide if license plates can be used.

Next: Mind Games »

U.S. Department of State-Designated J-1 Visa Sponsor
Alliance for International Exchange
The International Coalition for Global Education and Exchange
European-American Chamber of Commerce New York
Global Ties U.S.
International Au Pair Association
WYSE Travel Confederation