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Toyota New Zealand, in partnership with The Parenting Place, has put together its version of a ‘roadie survival kit’ for Kiwis heading off on family road trips this Christmas. The two have been working together for more than 10 years to build stronger New Zealand families with the good values that are essential to a well-functioning society and successful nation.
‘Toyota Family Journeys’ launches online today, and is packed with tips, tools and advice that’s been well and truly road-tested to ensure parents have strategies to ease the stress of travel and make the most of the family down-time that a long (or shorter) car journey affords them.
There are 100 conversation starters for children of all ages ranging from, “If you had a superpower, what would it be?” and “If you were in charge, what would your top five rules be?” to “How would you like to be remembered?” or “Is war ever justified?” There is also a treasure trove of downloadable activity sheets, videos, games and fun activities for the long haul (great podcasts coming soon too).
Andrew Davis, Toyota New Zealand’s General Manager of Marketing, says that the website is designed to help parents gather inspiration and practical ideas on how to connect with their kids in the car.
“New Zealanders are spending an increasing amount of time in the car - travelling to and from school and work, taking weekend trips to sports games, visiting the bach over summer or embarking on the classic Kiwi road trip. Why not make better use of this time to engage as a family?
"Children have a real need to be heard and understood as they develop and form their view of the world - and figure out who they are! Asking great questions and fostering their curiosity helps children learn, growing their resilience and self-sufficiency,” says Davis.
Toyota Family Journeys also covers making the most of school pick-ups and drop-offs, practical tips for making car time family time, and using travel and car trips to connect with teens.
John Cowan from The Parenting Place says that car time with ‘tweens’ or teens can provide a non-threatening environment to have significant conversations and moments of connection. “We need to use every moment we can to connect with our kids, and the car is a brilliant place to do this – especially when it comes to helping them navigate the puberty years.” he says.