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IDEAS?! What to use to keep a 3.6 yr old boy amused on 4 hour train journey?!

(19 Posts)
pipkin35 Mon 11-Jul-11 10:48:49

Any ideas welcomed please - except a portable DVD player. But nothing too huge/bulky since we won't have a buggy/storage with us.

He's never done longer than a 2 hour train journey before. We're going overnight. Am happy to stock up from Amazon now if I need to buy...

AKMD Mon 11-Jul-11 11:03:23

A Trunki.

An I-Spy book.


Good luck!

BeattieBow Mon 11-Jul-11 11:12:19

stickers are always good.

I did once travel with a small amount of playdough and some little moulds

lots of snacks

if you've got an ipod that is good - you could download some stories as well as the games on it.

rocksox Mon 11-Jul-11 11:15:29

Sticker books (usborne) work well here.

Also agree with the ipod idea - kept DD amused for a couple of hours or so on a plane recently.

A friend of mine once advised having one new thing to bring out per hour of travel although that was in the pre-DVD/ipod days

notso Mon 11-Jul-11 11:19:21

My mum got my two a pack of cards by Usbourne called 'things for small children to do on a train', even now aged 11 and 6 they use them on long journeys.
I find it useful to pack a small bag(pref small/light enough for them to carry) of surprises for long journeys and allow something to be taken out of the bag every half our or so.
Hawkins bazaar pretty good but I also raid their bedrooms for stocking filler type things that may usually be over looked.
Downloading story CD's on an MP3 or Ipod is another good one.

notso Mon 11-Jul-11 11:20:26

Oops cross posted. Great mums think alike!

juneau Mon 11-Jul-11 11:22:24

Yes - a sticker book! Also colouring, story books, toy cars or whatever he's into (my DS, the same age, loves Toy Story). He also loves watching cartoons on my iPhone. He has a little back pack and I encourage him to pack it himself with his favourite toys any time we have a car or train journey and I also put a couple of things in my bag and urge him to search in there when he's bored with what he's brought.

Those Richard Scarry books are great too - my DS loves the one called something like 'Trains and Trucks and Things that Go'. You have to find a little bug on each page (Goldbug), and the first time we did it he was occupied for ages trying to find him.

juneau Mon 11-Jul-11 11:24:25

This is the book:

pipkin35 Mon 11-Jul-11 11:24:51

Thanks, some great ideas here. Might try stickers but he's not really a fan of playdoh...

He's a massive non stop talker though - any verbal games (apart from i-spy) that you can remember?!

BUT, don't have ipod/fancy phone so none of those options available...

notso Mon 11-Jul-11 11:34:42

We play Animal Alphabet, take it in turns to think of an adjective and animal through the alphabet, Angry Ant, Beautiful Bear etc, and if you find something for X please post it on here!

piprabbit Mon 11-Jul-11 11:36:05

Take some plain paper and coloured pencils:
Teach him to play noughts and crosses.

Get him to do a huge, meandering squiggle across the paper - then colour in all the different segments (where the line crosses itself) in different colours and patterns.

Draw lots of different little shapes on a piece of paper - then get him to add eyes, hair, hats etc. to them to give them all different personalities. You'll end up with a crowd of tiny people that you can then talk about and tell little stories around.

Play the game where you tell a story by taking it in turns to say the next word.

Tell him a story based on his own ideas - so he tells you who is in the story, where it is set, gives you an object to include in the story. You can then talk about names, what the charaters look/sound like etc. then it's up to you to pull it all together into a little story. TBH he will be so excited to hear his character's story that he won't care that it's not Roahl Dahl.

notso Mon 11-Jul-11 11:38:42

For a bit of peace I like the who can make their sweet last longest, probably not the best for teeth but it means sweets last longer and DC are quietly sucking sweets so I can read the paper for two mins!

notso Mon 11-Jul-11 11:43:51

Oh and try and sit near someone old, usually they are happy to not be sitting near yobs and are good for a bit of chatter with you and DC.
Disclaimer this obviously doesn't always work but I find 90% of old people on trains are not 'tutty'.

BlueChampagne Mon 11-Jul-11 13:27:48

In addition to the excellent suggestions - snap!

GwendolineMaryLacey Mon 11-Jul-11 13:31:34

Do you have a table?

Stickers, colouring, food, jigsaw, small new toy, books, more food, toy cars

CombineArvester Mon 11-Jul-11 13:45:27

Depends on your 3yo I think. Mine is same age as yours but utterly incapable of eye spy or noughts and crosses anything of that level.

I go to charity shop and buy couple of books, small non-noisy cars or playmobile / lego / sylvanian families people with various accessories. Threading (big) beads onto string. Cbeebies magazine. Snap possible at this age. If you don't want to risk bring pens you can often find those fake etch a sketch things at newsagents, you know the ones I mean, the paperish ones with a fake pencil. I put everything in a bag and they don't get a new thing until they are really, really finished with the old one!

If you are going over a meal time it is amazing how long you can stretch out the eating bit, along with a couple of trips to the buffet car to get more tea, trip to the door area and have a look out of the boy wants to go to the toilet every 2 seconds so he can play with the buttons. Honestly at that age you can just answer their incessant questions - you only need the toys when you want a break to read the bloody paper in peace!

Good luck, 4 hours isn't that bad. On some trains they do a free kids pack (is it Virgin?) which will probably have covetable tat.

hels71 Mon 11-Jul-11 14:25:19

I often take my DD, now nearly 4,on the train and we have done several 5+ hour journeys.
have lots of snacks, including little treats we don't often have at home
buy a drink from the trolley (she thinks this is the height of luxury!)
have a bag of suprises which has in it:
paper, crayons, stickers, sticker/activity type books, snap cards, whot cards, a comic (usually one she does not get often like peppa pig), three or 4 new small toys (often dolls in our case) and she chooses a few small toys of her own...Dolly and Mr Girraffe love been shown things from the window by DD. I have also got some magnetic fairy things from ELC and some things for lacing.
I also have those 100 things to do a train and monster doodles suggested earlier and she adores those.

Things come out about every 30 mins unless she is totally engrossed!

She also likes to play with old tickets and we play ticket inspectors for what feels like hours..........

hels71 Mon 11-Jul-11 14:27:27

Oh and I ususally take a few small or two favourits and one or two new ones.......My bag does end up weighing a tonne but there we are!!

BlueChampagne Mon 11-Jul-11 16:22:43

Oh Combine I LOVE the phrase 'covetable tat' - it's perfect and I'll be adding it to my vocabulary grin.

What time is the journey? Any chance he'll sleep for part of it?

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