DIY,  Kids,  Projects

DIY Little Passports: Creating the World Explorer’s Club

Came across this cute subscription service from years ago which sends packages for your kid to learn about different places around the world. I loved globetrotter idea, which resurfaced because our little girl (age 6) is very much interested in science and geography. Since the ready-made-and-shipped-to-you kits were too expensive for us, the wheels in my head started turning… and a do-it-yourself “World Explorer’s Club” idea was born!

I looked into what’s included in the Little Passports kits, and thought, “I could do that!” This is not a new or unique idea, and I’d love to combine some fun stuff to share with my kid because I, too, yearn to travel and learn about other parts of the world. This project would require me to research other countries, think up some fun activities, recipes, and souvenirs, and write a personalized letter to my kid every month. If you’re considering doing something similar, hopefully whatever work I put into it can be useful to you in bonding with and getting to know your little explorer.

If our Tooth Fairy experience has taught me anything, it’s that I think my kid would love to receive mail from other places, while also learning and exploring in a meaningful way that will help her remember and appreciate them.

​A couple of years ago she got a toy from Chick-fil-A kid’s meal (they are usually awesome and educational, kudos!) which was a little illustrated booklet about a few places to visit in Africa, and a cute toy safari vehicle she could cover with some included stickers. She has kept that toy and booklet, pretended to be a world traveler, and even taped it up when the booklet started falling apart. Ever since then she’s been asking about different places in the world, and even chose a wall map of the United States of America she could color and put on her wall as a potty prize.

I figure it would be fun to highlight places that we’ve been to or are more familiar with first because we’d have a little more to share. I plan to record my ideas here, and document how they go! Christmas is coming up, and I’d like to give her the introduction in a gift then. I might not be able to wait, though!

These pre-made travel kits cost between $13-$16 per month. My goal is to be under that cost, and still make it really fun and special for my kid who loves little trinkets and making crafts.

What To Include

A few ideas for the introductory kit and subsequent countries:

  • ​Suitcase: Dress up a shoebox, metal lunchbox, or some other container
  • Passport: DIY these with a printer and card-stock, or even put your artist skills to use
  • Flag Stickers: buy this once and include the flag of the highlighted country for them to put in their passport for every country you have.
  • Stamps: how cool would real postage stamps be for a kid to look at and/or paste into their passport? I saw some random worldwide sets of 100-200 used stamps going for $1-$4 on eBay.​​

Writing Personalized Letter

Some ideas to include for your adventures to other countries:

  • ​Greetings or phrases
  • ​New foods you tried and refer to a recipe included with your kit
  • Landmarks you stopped at
  • People you bumped into
  • What that region may be known for or proud of
  • Animals or plant life you observed
  • References to folk tales, fairy tales, legends, or stories you can also include from the library
  • Music you heard, perhaps include a CD with a sampling
  • History you might want your child to be aware of or little nuggets for them to follow if they decide to do more research

Activity Ideas

I was thinking of simplifying this part and just buying a World Geography type activity book, and either photocopying select pages or tearing them out and including it in each kit.

Other activity ideas:

  • ​​Coloring pages: there are plenty of free coloring pages available online you can print and include in your kits, and some even have fun facts or visuals already
  • Word search
  • Crosswords or puzzles
  • ​Craft project for a landmark
  • Art project for a famous style or technique, or to highlight an animal
  • Recipe
  • Educational film
  • Language decoder


Have fun with this!

  • ​Flower pressings if a famous flower is from there
  • Keyrings of landmarks
  • Postcards or photographs
  • Miniatures
  • Interactive toy
  • Coins or currency

Enlisting Help

Around here (Utah) almost everyone you meet has been somewhere cool! Maybe they served a mission there, lived there, their family is from there, they interned there, they taught English there… Talk to your buddies, relatives, and neighbors about their experiences and maybe they’d even be willing to share a recipe, allow you copy a photograph, let you borrow an artifact, or help you with details in writing your letter.

Closing Thoughts

I thought it would be SUPER cool to sneak a “stamped” manila envelope (using one of your pre-purchase used stamps from eBay) every month into the mailbox for her to check for and open. She gets the thrill of discovering something in the mail for her without the cost of postage! We can stop the tradition whenever is appropriate, but it’d be a great exercise for at least 6 months to a year to get over that learning curve of developing these kits. If anyone has ideas or experience with places they’d like to share please comment!

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