Our family recently took a road trip to Austin and my four-year-old, who feels that one hundred is definitely the biggest number imaginable, said, "Mom, I guess there are probably one hundred places in the whole world." It baffles me when I stop to realize how small their world is at a young age.
Children don't see boundaries; they learn them through consequences and our teaching. While exhausting, their spirits remind us to live in the moment and mirror their excitement for life. If you are traveling for the holidays or have a geography buff on your hands, check out the following books to help them keep exploring and learning.
I received some great toy suggestions for traveling over on Instagram! One fun gift idea might be to speak their love language through maps by giving them a coupon for a special adventure: "Good For One Date: Let's find a spot within a five mile radius of home," and then spend some time choosing a location together on the map. You might pair these cookies with this book for an "after school" snack or send a message in a bottle after reading the most beautiful new book, 'The Uncorker of Ocean Bottles.' Happy gifting and happy traveling!
Wherever You Go by Pat Zietlow Miller - A sweet alternative to the commonly gifted, "Oh, The Places You Will Go!" This book is the tale of leaving for far off ventures and returning home when the time is right. It gives parents perspective, knowing the day is coming, and reminds us that they are leaving to better themselves (and not only to break our hearts).
The Uncorker of Ocean Bottles by Michelle Cuevas - The pastel illustrations in this book are moving and create a melancholy tone. The book is the story of a man who lives all alone on a hill and opens ocean bottle messages. He sets out to find the recipient of a message and in-turn receives a delightful surprise.
The Littlest Family's Big Day By Emily Winfield Martin - The perfect story to accompany a family adventure or even a move to a different home. A bear family explores their new neighborhood and creates a magical experience during the excursion.
If You Lived Here by Giles Laroche - Examining different types of homes around the world, this book provides interesting facts about regions and homes. It would make a nice addition to a classroom lesson or could be included in a nonfiction unit.
Maps by Aleksandra Mizielinska - Full of maps from across the world, this book shares interesting facts and info about each country. Also check out the activity book.
The Whisper by Pamela Zagarenski - This book proves that not all adventures require traveling. A little girl discovers how one can get lost in their own mind when they are allowed to create and imagine a story by reading a good book. Perfect for book lovers and big dreamers.
Atlas of Adventures by Rachel Williams - Full of activities, maps and facts from all over the world, this book can be revisited and explored over and over again.
City Atlas: Travel the World with 30 City Maps by Georgia Cherry - Taking a closer look into particular cities, the atlas examines thirty locations, their landmarks and fun facts about each.
Amelia Earhart, Little People, Big Dreams by Ma Isabel Sanchez Vegara - What better role model for a young traveler to discover than Amelia Earhart? The Little, People Big Dreams series examines extraordinary individuals who accomplished their childhood dreams.
At The Same Moment, Around The World by Clotilde Perrin - A beautifully told story of diversity from the perspective of time, children will think about their own day and their activities while learning about traditions and customs from across the world. "At the same moment in Paris, France, it is seven o'clock in the morning, and Benedict drinks hot chocolate before school."