Friday, 26 July 2013

Our activities in the car!

Given how small Singapore is, it's really amazing how much time we spend in the car. Well, I suppose this is partly due to the fact that we stay on the extreme West part of our sunny island... and the kids' childcare is more than a 15 minute drive away.

This is how the setup is in the car. The kidzes take up the entire second row of the car, with Asher and Shawna each on child carseats, with Isaac on his booster seat, in the middle.
A very natural looking photo - this is how they typically look like!!!
Being on the road so much, we've come up with a number of activities to keep the kids entertained in the car, other than listening to the radio. Some of them, we thought of. But most of them just kinda... evolved. Just thought we would like to share with you the games and activities the kids get up to in the car :)

The Alphabet Game
This started way back when Isaac was just learning his alphabet. He would suggest a letter, and we would all take turns to name objects or words that begin with that letter. For example, he would say "Letter B" and we would take turns to name anything that begins with the letter B from the usual "ball, boy, blue" to the not as usual "Batman, blood, bangsai". It's a very easy game, but intentionally so, so that the kids can play. Now, even Asher and Shawna join us in this game as they are learning their alphabet now in N1.

I Spy 
Isaac learnt this in school and was very excited to teach us the game. Basically, he learnt the colour version, whereby you take turns to be the one to say "I spy something that is ". For example: "I spy something red in colour" "Is it my shirt?" "No!" "Shawna's bag?" "No!" "I give up!" "It's that red triangle in front!" he said triumphantly, pointing to the equilateral triangle on the button on the dashboard that triggers the hazard light. He loves this game, but it has a few shortcomings when played in the car. #1 There are very few things in the car that you can name.#2  If you name an item outside the car, it's gone in a manner of milliseconds... However, the kids love this game, and sometimes I think they do it on purpose when they name something outside the car so you have a very hard time guessing...

Spot these stuff!
This is not exactly a game, but it is something the kids never fail to do. When they see something on the roads, they'd be sure to shout out and point it out to their siblings in excitement. They do the usual, like spotting ambulances, fire engines, police cars. Here are also some other not so usual ones:
  • Bumblebee - any yellow car is a Bumblebee, but this specifically excludes yellow taxis, those are simply "not counted"
  • Botak Trees - any tree that does not have many leaves is a botak tree
  • Soldier - any army men in uniform is greeted with loud cries of "Soldier! Soldier!" Asher, is especially enamoured with soldiers so Isaac and Shawna make sure to point them out to him.
  • Big _____ Car - Our car is a navy blue Honda Freed which the kids have nicknamed the Big Blue Car. They are very good with recognising other Honda Freeds on the road. When they see a white one, they'd go "Big White Car!", a red one "Big Red Car!" etc...
  • Transformers - yes, they would spot cars which have the Autobot or Decepticon symbol on the car and excited call out that they have seen a "good Transformer" or a "bad Transformer" car.
Car logos
Early this year, Isaac started paying attention to all the car brand logos, and started to ask us what brands they were and actively memorised them. He suddenly started doing this and was so enthusiastic about it that it got me wondering... One day, I found out that it was because one of his good friends in school, Shaun, was very into cars. Ah, that explains it, I thought to myself. But I thought it was quite a good memory exercise and it was probably quite normal for boys to have an interest in cars.

Clouds and scenery
Hubbs and I also have a habit of pointing out nice scenery to the kids. Clear skies with clouds, sunsets, rainbows, trees... anything and everything really. The kids would point out shapes in the clouds and tell us what they see in them. We want the kids to find beauty in nature too.

Hello, Bye Bye, Accelerate!
Asher is an incredibly sweet boy and he would smile and wave at anyone he sees from out of his side window. So, one day, Isaac invented this "Hello & Bye Bye game" Every time a vehicle in the lane next to us goes faster than us, the kids would wave and say "Bye bye car!" as the car speeds ahead of us. But every time we catch up with a car who was ahead of us, the kids would wave and say "Hello!" to that car in the next lane. They always have lotsa crazy fun with this game, and they love chanting a phrase over and over again. So one of the things they liked to chant was "Go faster! Go faster! Go faster" until one day, I said. "That is so boring. What is another word for 'go faster', Isaac?" He thought for awhile and said "Speed up?" "Ah, that's good!" I said "but you know what is even better? Accelerate! That means to go even faster, to speed up even more!" The kids catch on immediately and from then on, they chant "Accelerate! Accelerate! Accelerate!" whenever they want us to drive faster!

Centripetal Force - The Pushing Game
Currently, one of the routes to the childcare takes us through a road that has many tight bends, resulting in a kind of rollercoaster ride for the kids. They love it and would want to play The Pushing Game as was taught  to them by their Aunt, hubbs' sister. Basically, you push the person you are leaning towards because of the centripetal force in play. One day, I asked Isaac "Do you know what is causing you to lean to one side when the car turns? It's called 'Centripetal Force'" And I only said it that one time, but now all three kids know the phrase. In the morning, Shawna or Asher would ask me "Mummy, are we early today? Can we go Centripetal Force, please?" Yes, that road/route is now called Centripetal Force. But I found that they really know that the phrase refers to the force, coz when we sometimes make a tight turn, one of the kids will inevitably mutter "Centripetal force!" :)

The Spelling Game
Every time I hear the kids chant "Ac-ce-le-rate!" and blurt "Centripetal Force", I feel very pleased and amused. Who'd have known that even 3 year olds like the twins can learn such long words and even know the scientific concept behind them. Isaac is reading very well for someone who is turning 6 next month, and better yet, it seems that he can spell pretty swell too! He even finds that it is quite a fun game when I ask him to spell random words for me. Thus, every now and then, I would ask him to spell words for us. Shawna would inevitably want to play this game too, albeit not knowing how to spell a single word. So she would always say "I know how to spell! It's D I O C K!" no matter what word was being asked to spell. The amazing this is, she would consistently spell this non-word in the same exact way - D I O C K. It's become our in-joke about Shawna and her spelling diock.

Last but not least, there's dancing! Isaac can really groove and move to the music, and Asher has picked this up as well. Watch this video that was taken early this year, in the car, with Isaac dancing away. Watch out for his annoyed glance at Asher when he tries to disturb Isaac during his dancing. Also watch for Shawna doing  her mini dance in her corner :) Love this video!

So, what do YOU guys do in the car? :)


  1. Wow Isaac sure can dance! Where did he get his moves from? And I love how Shawna suddenly starts dancing too, with moves just like her korkor. The kids have a great vocabulary! Who knew car rides could be so educational? ;)

    1. Yes, I love their dancing! Not sure where they picked it up from?! hahaha... Yeah, I constantly speak to them and use all sorts of words so as to widen their vocabulary. They absorb so quickly like sponges that it amazes me too!

  2. Wow so many games! Isaac looks like a real big boss too haha. How does he feel about being a brother to twins actually?

    1. I think he likes being an older brother to the twins... most of the times anyway. The only times he doesn't like it is when he has to give in to them hahaha

  3. Ok, that video is super cute! Both Isaac and Shawna are so into it!

    1. Yeah! So cute, right?! I love that video I keep laughing when I see it hahaha

  4. Who taught Isaac to dance liddat??? You, Pam???


    1. hahhahahahaha THANKS HUH. Not me lah! Dunno where he picked it up from?!

  5. It's actually centrifugal force you experience in turning cars. Curiously, only centripetal force is taught in physics class.

    1. Thanks! I googled and checked up on this. Apparently centripetal force and centrifugal force are an equal and opposite force! =) interesting!

  6. Love Isaac's ah beng pose! We don't drive so I am very grateful that I don't have to concentrate on keeping the little ones safe AND have to entertain them at the same time. But what great ideas- am going to grab some for our bus rides!

    Ps our game in taxis when going by a sharp turn is "squeeze poppy!


Leave us a message or a comment if you have enjoyed reading this post! We love getting comments! :)


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Add this utility