Sunday, October 26, 2014

Toddler Airplane Activity Binder

A friend of mine starts an amazing adventure this weekend as she and her husband travel internationally to adopt the child they've been waiting for for almost three years. It's been eye opening and inspiring to watch them as they spent the last few years working and waiting through the paperwork process. And now their moment is here. Among hundreds of questions and concerns, my friend mentioned the long airplane ride back to the United States with their little toddler and what she was going to do for activities. Although many of her questions and concerns were ones I could only listen to with empathy, this was one that got my brain churning. Before they left our family gift to them was a Toddler Airplane Activity Binder.

Toddler Airplane Activity Binder

Although I won't know for several weeks if the binder was successful, I'm hoping it is helpful on the long plane ride. I can also see it being used in other settings where toddlers need some purposeful activities, such as waiting at a doctor's office or in a restaurant. 

To begin with I started with a 1 and 1/2 inch three ring binder. Although I knew the binder was a little large for the plane ride, I also wanted it to be large enough to hold all of the activities I had decided upon. I also bought a few of zippered plastic pouches for holding different materials. 

Some of the materials I included for playing were: pipe cleaners, pom poms, mini-playdoh containers, 2 race cars, glowsticks, sticker books, half sheets of white copy paper, and crayons. I was particulary excited about the pom poms as they were pom pom beads so they could be used for multiple activities. 

I also included a few great printables I found on the internet. One activity was some adorable free caterpillar counting cards from Powerful Mothering. The pom poms can be used on these cards or can be used to thread onto the pipe cleaners. I also found a large collection of free DIY printable playdough mats from Tutus and Tea Parties. I printed out both activity ideas and laminated them. 

The last thing I created was a set of laminated race car mats. I used black sharpie marker and white photo copy paper to create these road mats which can be used individually or placed together to make a small town. I three hole punched all of the playdough and race car mats so they could be clipped to the back of the binder.  

I also included a brief cover page with some of the ideas for activities.
The list included: 

Sticker Play (what toddler does not enjoy stickers?)
Playdough with Playdough mats
Counting Caterpillars (with pom poms)
Pom Pom beading onto pipe cleaners
Glow Sticks (again, I'm yet to find a kiddo who doesn't love a glow stick)
Race cars with car mats
And many more undiscovered activities. 

I can't wait to hear if the binder was at all helpful. But I am of course even more excited to meet this little kiddo!

I'm also planning on putting together one for my boys to use in places we winding up needing to wait or play quietly. 

What are some of your ideas for keeping toddlers entertained in public places?

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...


  1. what a great idea

  2. Were you allowed to take the Play-Doh on the airplane? Seems like that could be one of those - it's sort of a gel things! Great ideas! Thanks!

    1. I had to check in with the friend I gifted the binder to. She did not have a problem with the playdough on the plane.