Saturday, November 14, 2020

Living History


Image by Tim Hill from Pixabay 

If you’ve ever tried to interest teenagers in exploring a school subject on a day off from school, you know it can be harder than trying to pry their phones out of their hands. That said, adults shouldn’t give up trying to engage our youth in the world around them. Whether taking kids to plays to experience literature in action, encouraging math skills through music, getting hands-on with science or trying to make history come alive, we need to ensure that our children understand that their school subjects translate to their everyday lives. For so many of us, history is a subject which bored us when we were in school. Consequently, it’s hard for us to get excited about it and harder still to make that excitement contagious to our offspring.


Remember the boring museum tours of your school field trips? They’re history – no pun intended. Consider a hands-on museum for your extracurricular activity. You can work on a replica 17th century schooner after practicing the skills you’ll need in their visitor’s center. When you visit holocaust museum, you help youth learn compassion and empathy through the testimonies of those who suffered. Some learning centers combine history and science by letting kids explore a paleontology dig or walk through the scientific discovery process of the light bulb or a Tesla coil.

Outdoor Spaces

Battlefields look boring unless you’re looking through the lens of history. Acres of grass, some trees and a fence or two aren’t interesting unless you have a tour guide who can help you envision what happened in that space. Live or pre-recorded tours are available at most sites these days. You could also immerse yourself in a specific time period through a living history museum complete with period costume, manners and speech.

With a little help, both you and the kids in your life can spark your imagination and interest in history.

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