Childrens audio books have saved my sanity a time or two. I have 2 young children 5 and 7 and like most kids this age they constantly need to be entertained. In February I took my first vacation trip with both kids to visit my parents in Puerto Rico. I had actually taken my daughter the 7 year old last year but did not think I could handle them both by myself through the madness now involved in air travel.
As a fan of audio books I had already started using audio books in the van on longer car trips and the kids really enjoyed it but I did not have a chance to burn the childrens audio books that they had chosen onto CD where they could each have their own player. The plane trip is more than 3 hours and I knew even with the coloring books and the in flight movie I would probably bump into some tantrums particularly from my son.
This is where technology again came to my aid. I had synched the audio books that they had chosen to my Dell Axim in the hopes at some point I could at least keep one of them busy on the plane. On a last minute trip to the local pharmacy as I was going up and down the aisles I passed the audio/video section and found something called a headphone splitter. Now mind you this is not necessarily a new invention but I had never used one and the lightbulb went off on how I could use it to have both my children listen to their childrens audio books at the same time on the plane.
Below is a picture of the hook up.
I basically attached 2 headphones taken from their CD players and attached it to the Dell and then played the kids audio books from my Dell PDA. It easily killed and hour since the books they chose were Amelia Bedelia and Arthur’s Audio Favorites. These headphone splitters are pretty cheap and can be used on any digital player with a headphone input (including the IPod).
Whether you are on a plane or doing most of your vacation travel by car childrens audio books are great for keeping your children busy and keeping them excited about books. If you can instill the passion for reading in your children early it will benefit them a lifetime. My 7 year old daughter is actually reading now and audio books allow us to take books wherever we go.
The 2 childrens audio books that they took on that vacation are great examples of familiar classics that motivate children to listen and read.