Delayed at the airport. Long Haul flight.  Traffic jam.  Long car ride. Waiting ages in a restaurant.  Waiting to collect someone who is late…

If you are a parent the above list is likely to fill you with dread!  Entertaining young children can be a challenge at the best of times but when you are caught unawares with no colouring book, no novel, no DS or PSP and you have a child who gets bored easily it can be extra difficult.  , from Guide offers this list of 101 quick and easy emergency timewasters!  I think I need to laminate this for my purse!


1.Play “Rock, Paper, Scissors”

2.Arm wrestle

3.Thumb wrestle

4.Push palms together to see who can push the hardest

5.Stack hands one atop the other, pulling out the hand at the bottom and bringing it up top

6.Stack fists, using same rules as above

7.Stack arms, similarly

8.Play with your child’s hair

9.Let your child play with your hair

10.Draw a letter on your child’s back with a finger and see if he or she can guess

11.Draw a letter instead on your child’s arm

12.Have your child draw a letter on your arm or back, and you do the guessing

13.Take off your shoe and have your child practice shoe-tying

14.Take off your child’s shoe and find a different way to lace it

15.Take off your child’s shoes and sock and use the socks as puppets

16.Use your wristwatch to give a lesson in telling time

17.Use your wristwatch to time things going on around you

18.Let your child try on your wristwatch

19.Let your child try on your jewelry

20.Count by twos, threes, fives, tens

21.Count backward from 100

22.Pick a number between one and 10

23.Teach the 9 times table trick

24.Give a math equation for your child to figure mentally

25.Give a string of math equations and ask for the answer at the end

26.Make up math story problems

27.Say words to spell

28.Say words to rhyme with

29.Play “I Spy”

30.Try some tongue twisters

31.Play “I Went to …”

32.Sing some silly songs (softly)

 33.Do songs with hand motions, with and without the words

34.Play “20 Questions”

35.Look for things out the window

36.Play paddycake

37.Teach your child some clapping games

38.Have your child teach you some clapping games

39.Whisper secrets, silly and serious

40.Say “Tell you tell me three things you did today”

41.Tell a story, taking turns one sentence at a time

42.Write a poem, taking turns one sentence at a time

 43.Hide something (even just your thumb) in one fist — guess which hand?

44.Count your change

45.Count your currency

46.Make a stack or a snake with loose change

47.Fold or roll up currency

48.Make a pattern, train, or house out of credit cards.

49.Show your child the pictures in your wallet (yes, even your driver’s license)

50.Try to remember one of your child’s favorite storybooks; let your child correct your mistakes.

51.See how your child looks in your glasses

52.Give an invisible manicure

53.Give an invisible pedicure

54.Get an invisible manicure or pedicure

55.Have your child name all his or her classmates

56.See how many people your child can name in your extended family

57.See how many birthdates of friends and family your child can recall

58.Name a relative’s birth year and have your child figure out how old; invent relatives if necessary

59.Guess what the people around you do for a living

60.Make a Christmas or birthday wish list

61.Count how many words you can spot — on signs, posters, clothes

62.Make faces

63.Play Straight Face

64.Try to make each other laugh — last one wins

65.Have a staring contest

66.Have your child narrate a favorite movie

67.Interview your child for a TV news show

68.Speak Pig Latin 6

9.Play “Truth or Dare”

70.Make up your own secret code

 71.Think of rhyming words for items around you

72.Take turns naming words for a letter of the alphabet; last one to think of a word wins, and you move to the next letter

73.Same as above, but with rhymes

74.Same as above, but with entries in categories

75.Explain the meaning of various figures of speech

76.Make up silly similes

77.Make a puppet face with your fist, with your thumb as the lower jaw

78.Flip a coin

79.Do “This little piggy” on feet or hands

80.Give a backrub

81.Get a backrub

82.Crawl fingers up your child’s back or arm like a spider

83.Make up an acronym for your child’s name, and the names of other family members

84.Ask for favorites: TV show, movie, book, color, game, animal, friend

85.Play peek-a-boo

86.Give your child the name of an object and ask what color it is, what letter it starts with, what shape it is, if it’s heavy or light

87.Go on a “hike” with your two fingers walking over your child’s arms, shoulders and head

88.Break an egg over your child’s head by rapping it gently with your fist and then opening your hand to make the egg roll down the face

89.Do charades

90.Be mirror images

91.Play “Simon Says” on a smale scale.

92.Throw an imaginary ball

93.Blow imaginary bubbles

94.Blow a raspberry on your child’s arm

95.”Steal” your child’s nose

96.Be a little goldfish

97.Do “Here is the church, here is the steeple,” or make your own version for another building

98.Try guided relaxation

99.Practice breathing techniques

100.Repeat what the other person says; repeat what the other person says.

101.See who can go the longest without talking.