We need to stop using the excuse that it is expensive and inconvenient to travel with kids. More and more, the countries of the world are expanding their borders: selling cheaper flights, paving new roads, literally and figuratively. It may take more work and planning to bring your children along on an out-of-town (or country!) vacation, but in the long run, it will be worth it. There is no better teacher than experience, and the whole world can be their classroom.
Photography by Nyx Martinez
About the author: Nyx Martinez is a travel host on Living Asia Channel and Features editor of Mabuhay Travel+Lifestyle Inflight magazine. She is writing this while packing for Europe with her one-year-old son. Journey with her at www.nyxmartinez.com
What better way to learn about geography and reading maps than to hit the road and help dad while driving? During travel, every detail of the journey becomes something for the books.<br />
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Kids naturally pick up foreign languages faster than adults. Having them in an environment where they hear and practice new words and phrases helps them develop this skill even better.<br /><br />
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While adults may be judgmental and slow to embrace people from other walks of life, it comes naturally to children, who are like sponges soaking up every element around.
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Showing your child a different side of the world and how families and other people live can help him get to define his own roots even better and develop a sense of appreciation for his culture.
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This one is a given. The minute your child steps out of his country of birth, you have given him the opportunity to expand his network of friends—and who knows where that may take him in the future?
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It is largely ignorance and lack of education that keeps some people close-minded, regardless of their level in society. If you can give your child the gift of embracing and accepting other people’s differences, he’s more likely to become the global citizen you will proud of.<br /><br />
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No parent wants a picky eater. You can teach them a lot of the culture of a place just from learning and trying its food. When you are back home, try to incorporate follow-up lessons with themed meals. For example: Indian Nights with Curry, or Spanish nights with Paella.
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Yes, kids need their space to play, and this planet is home to amazing open spaces. Take them to natural lakes, rivers, mountains, and forests. Teach them to enjoy the beauty of nature and love the earth in its raw form, and hopefully, they will want to protect it.
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From the flight stewardess aboard a plane, to the homeless man on a dusty road, your children will have access to people from all walks of life, ideas and character. This can help them develop their own personality and choose the kind of friendships they want to have in the long run, or enable them to relate to different types of people.
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Besides just learning a foreign language, the ability to communicate clearly and concisely with other people is something which takes practice and can’t necessarily be taught in school. Exposing your child to situations where he needs to express himself will give him this platform and power of good communication. --A priceless gift that will last him his entire lifetime.