Today I have a free USA Road Trip Travel Log for you!! Hopefully, this will help you keep your kids entertained if you plan to travel a lot this summer. Plus, I’ll share some of the travel activities to make the car trip more fun!!
So first, about the printables: I made this Travel Book for the kids for our huge trip out West this summer. It’s about 40 pages, but of course you can pick and choose what you want to include. It has pages on things like:
- Daily Travel Log (where we’re going each day) and a USA map to color in as we drive through each state
- Living Log — Finding animals and plants from A to Z (trying to find the most unique animals and plants). The rule is you have to see it with your own eyes!
- Geocaching Log – We plan to try to find some geocaches along the way.
- License Plate Log — Kids mark off a map to try to find all the U.S. state license plates
- States & Capitals – My kids don’t know their states and capitals yet, so there are a couple pages for them to fill out (plus a states/capitals map)
- National Park Log
- Rock Log – We’re going to spend time specifically looking for 3 three types of rocks (in fact, we plan to go fossicking for diamonds in Arkansas!!)
- Cloud Log – I shared these pages a couple of weeks ago, but I thought we’d spend some time looking UP!
- Constellation Log — And… spending some time star gazing too!
- Funny Memories – There’s a page for funny memories
- I also included Rhymes, Riddles, Jokes, Brain Teasers, and Puzzles
I bound the books together for durability:
This USA Road Trip Travel Log is FREE to download! Enjoy and have fun with your kids! ~Liesl
Update: The kids *loved* their Travel Logs!! They filled them out each morning when we hopped in the car. They loved trying to find all the animals (for each letter of the alphabet) and enjoyed trying to find all the license plates from each state around the country!!
They also had fun collecting various stamps from the National Parks we visited. Some of the stamps had great designs; others were quite plain and generic.
USA Scratch Maps
Since we will be traveling across the country this summer on a trip out West, I thought the kids might really enjoy doing a scratch map (affiliate link) as we made our way across the country. I decided to go with a larger (almost poster size map 33inches x 23 inches because it also had the highways. I thought that would be a bit more fun and figured we would keep our scratch map in a poster tube.
There is also a smaller USA scratch map that is closer to 8×11 in size: USA Scratch Map. (affiliate link)
If you travel abroad a lot or are studying a lot of countries in your homeschool, you might enjoy this Scratch Off Bucket List World Map. (affiliate link) Just note that you cannot scratch off individual U.S. states with the map below.
There are a couple of art-supplies I added for those long stretches in the car. We got these scratch-off note cards (which are printed on card-stock material). They are 4 x 4 inches and there are 125 cards in the packet. They are currently $7.90 and I think the kids will have fun with these! Mini Scratch Art Paper (affiliate link)
I also picked up a couple of packs of modeling clay from the dollar store. My kids still love it (at ages 7 and 10)!! Sudoku Puzzles for Kids
Krazy Dad has hundreds and hundreds of free Sudoku puzzles for kids in 4×4 squares, 6×6 squares and 8×8 squares and other sudoku puzzles (that are even harder!). I printed out various puzzles for the kids and added those to their travel log books as well!
I purchased a number of books to take along on our trip.
The first is a beautiful book about U.S. geology. It’s called 101 American Geo-Sites You’ve Gotta See by Albert B. Dickas. (affiliate link) I can’t tell you how much I love this book! It has beautiful photos, maps, and cross sections that show the layers of rock at various locations. This is a great resource to add to our homeschool library and has given us some great ideas of places to stop along the way. There is a map at the front of the book that shows where the sites are located throughout the U.S.
We got National Parks Guide U.S.A – National Geographics Kids.(affiliate link) I wasn’t sure whether it would be worth it, but I’m glad I did. Each National Park has a two-page spread with four or five beautiful photos, a general description and a few tips. I’ll let you know later, but I think this will be a great way for the kids read up on some of the places we’ll be stopping at.
I also got Secrets of the National Parks: The Experts’ Guide to the Best Experiences Beyond the Tourist Trail.(affiliate link) I wanted a resource that might have a few suggestions beyond the map we get at the entrance to the park… especially because we’ll be camping for a number of days at several of the national parks.
The last book I got was called Your Guide to the National Parks.(affiliate link) It got raving reviews and I just couldn’t help myself. But unlike the other two that I got actual books, I ordered this one on Kindle. I did that partly because I wanted to read in bed at night (and prefer using my Kindle) and partly to save on space… how many books can you lug around the U.S. after all?!! I was worried about the way the pictures and formatting might work, but I found it convenient. I have found this book really helpful so far (even with the reminders of what to bring for camping/for hiking and so forth). I like that you can go to the table of contents and click on the state park. Then it give you another table of contents for that park with things like – introduction, essential info, regions, maps, various parts of the park (and options of things to do with kids)… So far I’m really happy I made this purchase (in addition to Secrets above) because it seems even more in depth. (But so far, I’m glad I have both… I’ll try to remember to come back and add my thoughts *after* our trip this summer!)
Audiobooks for Kids
We always travel with some audio books. This year I purchased Watership Down, but we’ve listened to many classics over the years — Pippi Longstocking, Island of the Blue Dolphins, The Hobbit, Bridge to Terabithia… and on and on. I wanted to mention a free website we used for years,called StoryNory.
For years and years we have loved and listened to the free audiobooks provided by Natasha over at StoryNory. We love her Katie stories and fairy tales. This summer, though, it is time to revisit some of the Greek Myths she has recorded. We listened to them a lot when LD was 5-7 or so. Now that ED is that same age, it’s time to bring out these tales again. We love the Odyssey stories. StoryNory’s Greek Myths include:
- Helen of Troy
- The Wooden Horse
- In the Cyclops Cave
- Circe the Beautiful Witch
- The Homecoming of Odysseus
- The Minotaur
- The Boy Who Flew Too High
- The Midas Touch
- Dido and Aeneas
- Jason and Medea
Where are we going this summer? tentatively we’ll be visiting…
- Crater of Diamonds Sate park (Arkansas)
- Canyon de Chelly (Arizona)
- Petrified Forest
- Montezuma’s Castle
- Grand Canyon
- Antelope Canyon
- Zion (and maybe Bryce) Utah
- Crazy Horse Memorial
- Mt. Rushmore
- the Badlands
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links in this post are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase.