5 Reasons why journaling will help kids get more out of travel.
My adventure journal is a constant companion on the road. In fact, I would choose my journal over my camera any day. It’s easy to forget things in the flood of new excitement and experiences. Not only does my journal help me remember the details about the people I meet and the places I see, but it makes those memories a lot more tangible. I can get deeper into the experience by putting it down on paper. And reading my travel journals from when I was a kid opens the floodgates of nostalgia, bringing the memories back as if I was there again.
Here are five more reasons to give your kids travel journals the next time you leave on a trip.
Journaling makes it easier to share the experience
Travel is a sensory overload. Every day is so filled with new sights and smells and tastes that it’s hard to remember every little detail—especially days, weeks, or years later. Journaling not only helps kids remember things they wouldn’t otherwise, but it helps them tell the stories later. I’ve seen children (and adults for that matter) talk about their recent trip with a half-hearted “it was fun”. Ask them to pull out their travel journal and they recount all of the amazing things they saw and did. The stories will flood out, and they’ll get excited all over again.
A journal is a personalized souvenir from a trip
Gift shops are filled with cheap trinkets that have short life-spans. It’s not long before souvenirs get lost, broken, or simply forgotten. The time that kids put into their travel journals (not to mention the memories within) make them far more valuable than a stuffed bison or ranger hat. And the more years that pass, the more valuable they become.
Travel journals offer a new way to interact with the world
How often do we see kids with their faces pressed to a screen rather taking in the world around them? As kids begin writing or drawing what they see, they start to notice new things to add to their pages. From the sound of glacial ice cracking in the distance as icebergs calve into the sea to tiny black tadpoles swimming at the edge of an alpine lake, kids are more willing to tune in when they’re looking for something they can put down on paper.
Their journal is a friend on the road
Travel can be lonely. There are few recognizable faces. Everything is constantly changing. The act of traveling, with all its newness, can be overwhelming to the point that kids may crave something familiar. The pages of their travel journal can be the perfect travel companion with which they can communicate about whatever they are feeling at the time. Whether venting about the car ride or admiring the beauty of a rainbow at the base of a waterfall, their journal might be a friend they can count on.
Journaling gives kids something to do
Traveling is all about the journey, right? Well, sometimes all that journeying is boring. No matter how beautiful the scenery is, you can only stare out the window of a moving vehicle for so long. That goes double for sitting around an airport. A great way to keep kids occupied can be to recap the day’s activities. This is where some adult encouragement can go a long way. Make writing/drawing in their journal into a game or a routine that they look forward to. This is where stickers, colored pencils, and glue sticks for sticking post cards and other memorabilia to pages come in handy. And while they’re adding to their journals, they will (almost without their knowledge) be building up the fond memories that they will have about their vacation for decades to come.