Spring break is right around the corner for most of the Madison area, and is typically a much needed break for kids and families. Are you going somewhere for spring break? While vacations can be exciting, they also mean a change in routine, a new environment, and new foods. Foreshadowing, or telling your child ahead of time what is going to happen and what to expect, is key to helping prepare your child for a successful vacation. Here are some of my favorite tips to help foreshadow what to expect on your trip!
Talk about where you are going and what you will be doing. Pull up pictures on the internet and show your child some things you might see. Allow your child to ask questions about anything they see in the pictures. Talk about how you will get there, how long you will be there, where you will sleep, and what you will eat. These details will help put your child at ease and allow them to ask any questions they have before you are there. Write a social story specific to your trip if needed.
Read books that relate to where you might be going. If you’re planning a beach vacation, check out some books from the library that take place at the beach. If you’re planning a skiing vacation, check out some books on skiing. This will allow your child to see pictures of the environment that they are going to, but also learn about some of the things they might be doing.
Role play! Set up a pretend beach or airport at your house and pretend that you’re on vacation. Pretend you are on an airplane or in the car. Use stuffed animals to pretend to be other people you might see. Have fun with it!
Use apps! One of my favorite apps to use with kids who are traveling is the Bamba Airport App. This app allows the child to fly with fun characters and see how and airport might work. Play this game with your child and talking about what is happening as the characters embark on their trip!
Written By: Liz Hedrich, CCC-SLP, Speech Language Pathologist