As “responsible” parents it’s our job to make sure that we provide everything our children need to live long, healthy and happy lives. We must lead them by the hand when necessary while also acknowledging when it’s best to give them a gentle push to help them learn independently and experience things outside of their comfort zone. When one becomes a parent it’s not uncommon to start to see risk lurking around every corner. Where once there was a quiet street or a tastefully decorated room, a new parent sees only slip and trip hazards, foliage to get lost in or sharp corners upon which little heads can get bumped. This risk aversion can lead us to become reticent when it comes to taking our youngsters abroad. Yet, if this prevents them from experiencing the joy and adventure of overseas travel, you could ultimately end up harming them and impeding their development.
Risk is an essential part of childhood and your family holidays will likely become staples of their most treasured childhood memories when your kids reach adolescence. Here are some important reasons why you should travel with children…
It Broadens Their Horizons
While the digital age affords kids lots of different ways to get a snapshot of what life is like in other countries amidst other cultures, there’s no substitute for getting out there and immersing yourself in the sights, sounds, smells and tastes of another culture. In an age where smartphones and tablets bring the entire world to a kid’s fingertips it’s easy for them to become blase, but show a kid the Taj Mahal or Niagara falls and they can’t fail to be impressed.
It Appeals To All Learning Styles
Broadly speaking there are three learning styles, Visual, Auditory and Kinaesthetic. Some kids learn best by seeing, some learn best by hearing and others learn best by doing. Although all kids have an aptitude for all 3, most children favor one. What makes travel such a great learning experience is because it’s such a multi sensory experience, exposing them to new sights, sounds, smells and activities, there’s no way they can fail to learn something new. Whether you guide younger kids through some foreign art galleries and museums or take older kids with you for some Global Adventure Challenges, they’ll find ample opportunities to learn and develop their skills. This will aid their cognitive processes in ways which are likely to aid their curricular learning in school or college.
It Helps Them Develop Language Skills
Aside from broadened horizons and creative problem solving skills, kids also gain better language skills by travelling. Try to encourage your kids to engage locals in their native language. Learning languages in school is one thing but learning them in their natural habitat is something else altogether. When kids have well developed language skills they gain an aptitude for a highly employable skill which can open a wealth of career paths up to them.
So the next time you think twice about taking your kids on holiday, just think of the myriad ways in which they could benefit from joining you on your adventures.