On the Road: 3 Kids crafts that are good for travel

Whether you’re driving to the shore or going on a cross-country vacation, if you’re traveling with kids, you’re going to need some help keeping them busy. Here are a few analog art projects to make traveling fun, creative, and engaging for kids. Plus, you get to keep your sanity!

1. Treasure Map

Create an awesome treasure map of your journey by printing out your route from Google maps. Highlight the starting point and the destination for them, plus any stops or significant landmarks you might pass to help them along in navigating. They can use washable markers, stickers, and other fabric-safe materials to add to the map—fun things they’ve seen or heard along the way, imaginative play, etc. Not only are they learning map skills, which develops spatial thinking and visual literacy, and  they’re also building anticipation of the destination, and will likely stop asking “are we there yet?”

2. Exquisite corpse

A drawing game that everybody can participate in (minus the driver!), exquisite corpse is a fun and relaxed way to work together in creating a surrealist work of art. The idea is that one person starts out by drawing something, anything, on one end of the paper, then folds it over hiding about 90% of the illustration. The next person then uses the bits and pieces of the first drawing that haven’t been hidden to inspire another, unrelated drawing. Pass the paper around until there isn’t any space left, then open it up to reveal the composite drawing. It’s usually quite hilarious, and will certainly be strange, especially with the added obstacle of drawing in a moving vehicle!

3. Pipe Cleaners and Hot Loops

This good old stand by can keep the kids busy for hours with endless bright and colorful opportunities. There are tons of great hot loop tutorials out there for finger weaving bracelets, headbands and more, plus pipe cleaners can be made into pretty much anything—mini sculptures, jewelry, etc.. If they’re old enough, you can throw a variety of large beads into the mix and challenge them to create a pattern!


Philly Art Center has been cultivating creative genius in kids and adults since 2004. We inspire every student to create, play, laugh and learn! Learn more