Busy Kids, Happy Kids: Part 2

In this series of excerpts from my book, Cruising the Caribbean with Kids, I’ll share ideas for keeping sailing kids busy, happy, and tuned in to their surroundings. Part 2 here!

One great way of keeping kids tuned in to sailing is to assign them the task of making a movie — not just filming various clips, but editing them into a movie that chronicles a specific aspect of the trip. They might focus on “a typical day aboard,” capturing a bit of everything from breakfast and weighing anchor to sailing, lunch, and evening activities on board.

Alternatively, your young cinematographer might choose to film an original story, spoof a television program, or make a sailing how-to. Anything goes! To develop organizational skills at the same time, have the kids approach this in multiple steps, from brainstorming what they should include and outlining their movie before actually moving on to production (a process similar to outlining an essay).

Make the assignment as specific as possible, such as: a three minute movie in which no single clip runs longer than fifteen seconds, with different transitions between segments and a credit section at the end. If your kids aren’t already familiar with self-editing software like Microsoft Movie Maker, they’ll quickly learn a new skill since most of these programs are self-explanatory. Not only is moving-making a fun activity, it also creates a nice souvenir of your trip.

To watch an interview-style video about “Boat Life” (made by my son and his friends while we parents worked on our boats in a marina in Tauranga, New Zealand), click here. To watch another one (“Life on a Boat”) with snippets of daily life on board, click here.

For more ideas on fun and educational activities to do on board, check out Cruising the Caribbean with Kids, which sells for only $2.99 in ebook format!