Grandparents – violent video games, mindless toys… even modern children’s movies can offer content that’s a bit risque for your young ones.
Yet whether you’re having a family night with your own children or you have the grandkids for a few days, there are appropriate distractions you can all enjoy together. Some are titles you didn’t even know existed!
Here’s a list that will definitely earn Grandparents some “Cool (Grand) Parent” points.
1. Video Game: Trine 2
This is a great game for kids who think Wii U and LittleBigPlanet are a little too immature. It’s a fabulous fantasy adventure with a simple story, plenty of (bloodless) action, and exciting puzzles and cinematics. You’ll fall in love with the lush graphics, and the controls are so simple even Grandparents will understand them.
Try the multi-player cooperative setting, where up to three people can play at once.
2. Movie: Kiki’s Delivery Service
You probably have heard of Kiki creator Hayao Miyazaki, who is often called the “Walt Disney of Japan.” Many of his films have crossed over to mainstream Hollywood.
But where Ponyo is a little too dull and Spirited Away is a bit too intense, this 1989 romp about an entrepreneurial young witch is in the happy median. And no tasteless jokes or innuendos you’ll have to explain to your kids. It’s old, but there’s a reason why it’s still rated as one of Miyazaki’s best: Both the plot and the message stand the test of time. It’s also been updated with a fresh 2010 DVD release.
Fun and appropriate for everyone, but especially recommended for high-spirited little girls.
3. Toys: Rokenbok Toys
An entry for the tiny tots in your life, Rokenbok combines the accessibility of toy blocks with the excitement of robotic controls. Winner of dozens of awards, the brand espouses building block systems that are easy to use, educational and fun for everyone. The highly acclaimed ROK Blocks Set is a good place to start for young builders.
Think ages three and up. The best part: sets of varying difficulty can be integrated with one another, so as your child grows, their set can grow with them!
4. Comic book: Atomic Robo
Comic books have really grown up, haven’t they? Superhero books that are kid-appropriate can be hard to find, not to mention kind of boring.
The award-winning comic Atomic Robo changes all of that with a genuinely interesting storyline and a hilarious titular character. Many of its issues can be found online, published through the comic app Comixology so you can read with your iPad, Kindle, or even Android device.
5. Webcomic: JL8
Remember the old-school comic strips? This online creation is loosely based on the superheroes both you and your kids know and love, with a twist: here, they are re-imagined as eight-year-olds.
The result is an old comic fan’s dream. Artist Yale Stewart doesn’t publish print versions of his project — it isn’t sanctioned by DC Comics, who owns the copyright for the Justice League characters. As the comic gains in popularity, however, that may change. For now, enjoy the wildly funny strips for free. And tell your kids about the good old days, when we all read comics on actual paper.
Grandparents – How do you entertain your kids or grandkids on a rainy day?