It is spring break and your family is exploring Boston, Massachusetts, and learning all about the American Revolution, a few of our founding fathers, and to top it all off you visit Plimouth Plantation and go to view the big rock in Plymouth Harbor. How can you make sure your kids internalize what they learn, have fun processing the information, and have something they can share with friends and family at home? Here is a list of our favorite ideas!
- Keep a photo journal. Give your child a camera and ask them to take pictures about the historical sites they visit. Print out all the pictures at the end of your trip and make a photo album. Work with your child to label the pictures and add relevant dates and time periods. Alternatively, create the photo album on Shutterfly.com or Snapfish.com. Use online sources to find out more information about each historical site and add it to your comments.
- Keep a daily journal as if you are living in a different time period. We always love to have our children write a daily journal during vacations. Of course, it doesn’t always happen, but we do have good intentions. A fun twist is to have your child write their journal entry from the point of view of the time period they are learning about. So, if you visit Plimouth Plantation, have your child write about what they learned as if they actually lived there during that time period!
- Complete a timeline with the people you learn about, the places you visit, and the pictures you take. After your trip, select a series of pictures taken from historical sites. Figure out when that site was important and label it with the date. Then, create a timeline using butcher paper, a string and index cards, or a paper taped into a timeline. First, add basic dates from American History to the timeline. It might be fun to also add important dates from your family history if you know them! Then, post pictures and information about each picture from your vacation on the timeline.
- Start a collage scrapbook using brochures, postcards, and fliers from your visits. To make a collage scrapbook, simply keep every piece of paper you can find from your visits to historical sites! Then, create either one large collage or a series of collages by cutting out pictures, comments, and dates.
- Write a history web page or Facebook page and share it with friends and family. Include information that you have learned, pictures from your visits, key information to know, and then write quizzes or tests for each post you write! Perhaps you can offer simple prizes for anyone who gets 100% on your quizzes?
How do you record your child’s learning during vacations?