Whether traveling to Mexico or any other destination, children at some point or another in life will experience their first vacation. Depending on the child’s age, some may not even know what is happening, while others will be intrigued, anxious or sometimes even fussy. Preparing children ahead of time can make the transition from home to vacation and back again a pleasant experience.
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Parents of very young children (those under 3) or those with chronic medical conditions should take their children to the doctor for a wellness exam. Since many young children have not received all of their recommended childhood immunizations yet, a physician can advise parents regarding travel plans. Sensitive areas sometimes affected by travel like ears, skin and lungs can also be checked to ensure your child is healthy enough to travel.
Preschool aged children love adventure, yet on other days can be shy, fussy or stubborn. Showing children pictures found in travel books, watching travel DVD’s, going to the toy store and looking at transportation vehicles, watching preschool shows that teach Spanish words and eating Mexican food at home can help young children prepare for some of the various sights, sounds and smells they will experience.
Building up a sense of excitement for the “big day” will help deter any negative feelings preschoolers associate with change. While most older children will be excited to go somewhere new, some school-aged children may be sad because they will have to leave their friends, miss baseball practice or some other special event. These feelings can be overcome by appointing the child to be in charge of a certain task.
Filming family vacation movies, serving as an itinerary planner, capturing fun moments using a digital camera or another assigned activity will help children feel they are in a position of great importance and their assistance is priceless. Once home, these children can produce the family movies, print and distribute photo albums or create vacation scrapbooks. A Childs First Mexico Vacation!