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How to keep a 5 year old busy?

I am planing a trip from Newark, New Jersey to Honolulu. It is a 10 and a half hour flight. I have a five year old and am worried he will get bored and get cranky. Any tips on how to keep him busy.

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I do a lot of flying with my children, and started doing so when my oldest was just 3 years old (when she and I would fly from New Zealand to The Netherlands). I recently survived a return trip from Massachusetts to New Zealand (43 hours traveling one way, 27 hours coming back ... 20 hours each-way on planes, the rest in airports) with my 5 year old and my 6 month old. With some careful planning, it can be relatively painless!

I always pack some activity/coloring books, crayons and pens, Gameboy and games, DVD player and DVDs, her favorite fleece blanket, snacks, 1 quiet toy, some children's Tylenol or Motrin (in case of ear pain caused by pressure changes when landing), and Benadryl (just in case everything else doesn't work and I want to encourage her to sleep).

Seems like a lot, but you'll be amazed how much fits into a cabin bag when it's packed carefully! Also, I bought her a kid's cabin bag with wheels, so she can pull it around herself (it's one less thing for me to juggle). If you're flying with a carrier that has in-seat entertainment, then leave the DVD player out. Most of the in-seat systems have a good range of Nintendo games, cartoons, and kids movies, but the response time between the controller and the system is a bit slow, so playing the NIntendo games can be really frustrating for the younger kids. You should be able to check with your carrier before you leave as to what they have on offer.

Oh, and I take a spare change of "the bottom half" in case of an untimely accident, and I let my kids travel wearing their slippers.

If you haven't bought the tickets already, take a Red Eye. They should sleep most of the way.

Best of luck, thats a long flight for all.

Act like a movie star.
Ask someone for their autograph, pretending that you think they're Tom Cruise or Madonna (This best when the person looks nothing like the movie star in question)
Ask the guy next to you to hold your dentures (senior citizens only)
Ask the person next to you, "Are you in the Witness Protection program too?"
Attempt to promote Hinduism among passengers
Bring a "Word-a-Day" calendar on board with you. Read every single word aloud and attempt to use it in a sentence. Use them all incorrectly. "My, you have a very irate home,' she said governessly."
Bring a cellular phone. Call God. Say, "The reception is much clearer up here...."
Bring a duffel bag packed with pipe cleaners, styrofoam balls, construction paper, etc. Organize a "Kraft Korner". Make a craft likeness of the person sitting next to you. Give yourself an "F".
Bring a microphone and act like Frank Sinatra
Bring your computer keyboard without a monitor. Place it on your lap. Stare into the palm of your hand. Wait. Push the return key a few times. Yell out "Yes! Alright! I told them I didn't need a laptop!" Plug the headphones into your nostril and play Doom.
Call the stewardess "nurse".
Continually offer to share your "Beano".
Decorate. Bring a scatter rug and tiny draperies. Hang a "Home Sweet Home" plaque on the back of the seat in front of you. Invite your fellow passengers in for tea.
Describe your sex life in great detail to the five-year-old next to you
Disco dance in the aisle
Don't use deoderant, then "accidently" stick your armpit in someone's face
During the inflight movie, ask to share headphones with someone
During the meal, loudly explain that on time you ate shark fin soup and proceeded to puke all over the airplane, spewing chunks of shark on the other passengers
Explain how, one time, the plane was crashing and the oxygen masks didn't come out, 'cause they aren't really reliable, and that if the plane was to crash, everyone would die
Fart loudly and act shocked, looking around to see who did it
Fiddle around with the emergency exit, then ask a fellow passenger if he has a crowbar
Get some rub-on tattoos and a leather jacket, pretend that you belong to a biker gang
Give someone a coin, saying "Heads, I detonate the bomb. Tails, I don't"
Go into the bathroom and make rude bodily noises, then come out looking refreshed.
Go into the bathroom, drop your pants, then come out, yelling "We're out of toilet paper! Stewardess!"
Go into the cockpit, ask the pilot in an obnoxious voice "Why do the call it the COCKpit?" then snort as if it's the funniest thing in the world
Go up to someone and ask loudly if they wouldn't mind applying Preporation H to your hemrrhoids.
Hum the Monty Python theme song.
If someone has a bad toupee, whack it off.
Jump up and scream "AAAHHH!! I left the stove on!!"
Lead a bible study session in the back of the plane.
Lead a revolt against the first class passengers.
Lean back in your seat, fold your arms behind your head and exclaim, "Thank God for auto-pilot, eh?"
Mess up your hair, untuck your shirt, basically look crude, and mingle with a first class guy as if you were long-lost friends
Moon passing Delta planes.
No matter what the meal choices are, demand rice-a-roni.
Pick your nose and pat the person next to you.
Pinch the stewardess' butt as she passes.
Pretend you're flying the plane.
Put on a ten foot diameter sombrero and slouch in your seat, whacking everyone on the head.
Remark that perhaps you shouldn't have put superglue in your undies that morning.
Ride carry-on luggage down the aisle, yelling "Yeee-ha!"
Say, "Did you know every time a plane crashes, an angel gets its wings?" Then sigh and stare dreamily into the clouds.
Scratch your butt, then sniff your finger.
Scream and dive under your seat for no apparent reason.
Show off your Batman underwear.
Sing along with the songs on your Walkman.
Snap Polaroids of him or her. Pull out an empty photo album and arrange the pictures inside it. Tuck the album under your jacket and say, "You know, in some cultures they believe that when you take a person's own their soul...," while smiling maniacally.
Sneeze, using somebody's sleeve instead of your hand to cover it
Snort when you laugh
Speak in Spelling Bee-eese: "Hello. H-e-l-l-o. Hello. Nice weather we're having isn't it? Weather. W-e-a-t-h-e-r. Weather."
Spill soda "Accidentally" on the person next to you.
Sport a kamikaze helmet and goggles. Speak in a low voice into a hand held tape recorder: "Today's date, December 7th, 1941. I was not able to command my own personal plane but success shall still be ours...."
Start a hot dog stand.
Start singing the Shari Lewis theme, "This is the song that never ends, it just goes on and on my friends, some people started singing it not knowing what it was, and they'll continue singing it forever just because, this is the song that never ends...." Suddenly realize that you can never stop singing. Become very panicky. Scrawl "Help me" on a piece of paper and hand it to the person sitting next to you. Claw at your throat and thrash around in the seat. Never stop singing.
Steal a businessman's laptop, play solitaire on it.
Suddenly remember that you left your iron on. Ask if the pilot would mind going back so you can check.
Switch accents and see if anyone notices.
Tap at the windows, saying "Looks pretty tough" then ask somone if they have a bat you could use to test.
Tell corny jokes and laugh like it's absolutely hilarious, then expect others to do the same 46. Wear a hairpiece and switch it often, seeing if anyone notices
Tell the person next to you your life story, from DNA to that afternoon
Tell your fellow passenger that you just heard the bathrooms were out-of-order. Then pause and say, "Did you know that peanuts are a natural diuretic?" Smile.
Try to lead plane in song "Oh I wish I was an Oscar Myer Weiner"
When there's any nudity, say "Hey! He/she must be real cold!"
When they ask something, pretend that you don't know and you have to go ask someone else. Repeat wtih every question. (ie., "How are you today?" "How can I help you," "what would you like to order")
When two people kiss in the film, belch real loud.
Whip out your kazoo and give first class a special entertainment show.
With a desperate look, ask the stewardess where the bathroom is, then look relieved and say "Nevermind. Do you have any towels?"
With a fellow passenger, Re-enact the disco scene in "Airplane!"
With the person next to you, discuss cannabilism among airline crash passengers on deserted islands.
Yell out, "John Lithgow is on the wing!"

Sleeping pills. Lots of 'em.

Tyler H
give him a coloring book and have a hand hald game for him.

give her food. not junk food but like fruit and veg. then give her/him toys its a sure fire that it will work.

Rosario M
Be sure to bring with you his favorite toys. But don;t show all of them to him at once. Just give them to him one at a time. Also, try to notice his favorite comics or reading books and writing materials. It is true that the trip will be boring for the kids. Also buy a new toy that he will choose from the toy store.

Anything the kid likes to do that you can fit in a small bag is fine, As a flight attendant, I recomend taking a late flight so the child sleeps. Walking him/her aroudn the plane is fine but it's not so safe. Saftey is the most important thing. don't rely on the airlines movies, they don't always show kiddie movies, especially from nj to hawaii. make sure you have a sippie cup (even if they dont' use them anymore) so they have somthing to suck on while landing to ease the pain in the ears. it also maybe worth paying for an extra seat just to have the extra room

One word: snacks...

a portable DVD player....

no nap before he goes....

DVD player

Or Nyquil....lots of it

handheld game system spare battery and several games.

I use a dvd player and take a couple of story books with me on every flight... and It keeps him quiet the whole time... otherwise he would make a scene.... Oh and don't forget some of his favorite movies or cartoons.

Have a fund trip

Coloring books
CDs that they like
Quiet toys
Gameboy or such

give himm a mobile with video games

Try using coloring books with built in crayons or maybe some little books. If you have a dvd player that would keep him busy for a little while. Bring maybe a nintendo with some kid games or if they have a movie or tvs on the plae you maybe could get him to watch that.

You are going to have a wonderful time in hawii, the beaches are very beautiful.

aaagh! I have a just turned 6 yr old boy and a 4 yr old boy who will be 5 shortly.... naturally he probaby will get bored and cranky a little but to minimize..... here are some options: gameboy, portable dvd player even better thats 1.5 hrs gone. read to him. maybe even books about flying. snacks. thats a good 20 min here and 20 minutes there. talk to him. talk about what u see outside the plane. talk about the people on the flight. play some guessing games. play i spy, your own version. rub his head to help him relax so hell take a little nappy. pretty soon before u know it u'll be there. 5 yr olds love to soak up their environment, talk, & ask alot. just respond!! also another cool idea is have him draw some pictures of his observation of the plane, the trip, or the people. tell him its for you and be sure when you get home to hang it on the fridge! that way he has his own accounts of the trip and you have something to remeber for a lifetime.

coloring books, picture books, music, DVD player, children's sleep meds, bubble gum, if you have a window seat: look at the clouds

his favorite quite toys
some color books
my advice is to don't give him DVD or games - he'll be tired after using them and could misbehave

don't let him sleep to much before the flight

Give him books to read

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