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Learning Toys for Airplane Traveling Preschoolers

A list of preschool learning toys that are great for airplane travel, because they are quiet, self-contained, reusable, and don't have too many pieces

My special needs son enjoys preschool level activities.  Since we might have some airplane trips in our future, I thought it might be a good idea to create a list of quiet, self-contained, toys that have an added bonus of being good for learning too.  If you're a homeschool family (like we are), then these activities would also be great for keeping a littler one occupied and happy while schooling the older ones.  Click on the colored links, so you can pack an amazing backpack of fun toys for your next trip or rainy day at home!


My criteria for these activities is as follows-


SELF-CONTAINED- These activities often come with their own tin or case or are easily slipped into a backpack without additional packaging.


NOT TOO MANY PIECES- This one seems pretty self-explanatory, but if you're traveling with little ones, you want to make sure you don't have too many tiny things to keep track of as you go about your trip.


QUIET- None of these toys make noise or encourage the child to be loud or rambunctious.  They shouldn't bother your row-mates and fellow passengers too much.


REUSABLE- These toys can be played with over and over, which give you lots of play potential.


SOLO OR IN SMALL GROUPS- If you're preschooler has siblings, you know that sometimes they all want to do the same activity, and sometimes they need to work alone.


SKILL LEARNING- Most importantly, all of these toys were picked because they encourage your preschooler to work on at least one if not more skills.


A list of preschool learning toys that are great for airplane travel, because they are quiet, self-contained, reusable, and don't have too many pieces

Wooden Pattern Blocks and Cards- Although there are several pieces in this toy, the colorful wood shapes encourage kids both to work on their geometry.  If you're kids are younger, then maybe you'll only want to bring the tin containing the blocks.  However, if you're traveling with a mix of older and younger kids, then you can bring the tin with the pattern cards.  Kids can work on visual discernment and matching to create the pictures from the cards. 


Highlights Hidden Picture Book- When I was a kid, the Highlights magazine was the best way to pick up germs and keep yourself entertained at the pediatricians office (haha).  Now, you don't have to share all the hidden picture puzzles with other kids and can keep them all to yourself.  With an entire book of puzzles, this brain-working activity should keep your preschooler busy for several hours!


Fine Motor Busy Board- The double-sided bus themed busy board has gobs of fine motor skills to practice.  From snaps to buckles, buttons, and bows, there's almost no end to the amount of time your child can spend on this toy.


Scratch Drawing Papers- My kids love these scratch and draw papers, where you use the wood stylus to draw pictures on the black page.  Not only is your preschooler working on fine motor skills through drawing, but they can also work on writing their name, numbers, or shapes.  A baby wipe works great for cleaning up the little black flakes if kids get them on their hands.


Spot It Jr. Game- If you haven't heard of Spot It, you're missing out.  This Jr game is designed for preschoolers and has some fun animals pictures on the cards.  The basics of the game is that any two random cards have one, and only one, match between them.  You're child can work to find the matches between the two cards alone or the game can be played competitively with a small group.


Go Fish Travel Game- Here's another game that can be played solo or in a group.  Use the magnetic fishing poles to catch fish.  You could also encourage your child to work on counting and color sorting.  The whole thing and all the pieces closes up into a hard case, so you can slip it easily into a backpack or carry-on.


Wooden Geoboard- A snack bag of rubberbands and this wood geoboard are all your child needs for endless fun.  They can work on making shapes, play around with tessellations, and explore patterns.  Great for homeschoolers too!


Suction Cup Fidget Spinner- Most preschoolers don't have big enough hands to play with a fidget spinner the correct way, which is why these suction cup ones are so genus.  You can stick them to the tray table, window, arm rest, or anywhere else you have a flat surface.  Then, your child can spin the toy over and over as much as they'd like.  Children who love to spin wheels and propellers will love this toy.


Melissa and Doug Reusable Sticker Pads- These reusable stick pads come in so many themes that you're sure to find something that your kid will love.  The books come with scenes and stickers that your child can play with over and over.  When you're done playing or your plane is landing, put everything back in the book at slip it back into the carry-on.


Traveling in COVID times?  Worried about germs on the airplane tray table?  Grab some disposable tray covers and be ready for lots of playtime and snack time.


Pin It!

A list of preschool learning toys that are great for airplane travel, because they are quiet, self-contained, reusable, and don't have too many pieces



A list of items for moms to carry on the plane for keeping herself and the kids clean, entertained, healthy, and happy.

Airplane Travel Kit for Moms


Airplane themed activities for preschool and early elementary kids to do either on the plane or at home before you leave

Airplane Learning Ideas for Travel


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