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Including Vacations in Your Homeschool

For homeschool families, vacations are often the ultimate field trip. The great thing about using a vacation as a field trip is that your kids will be learning without even realizing it! There are many ways to plan and take a vacation that includes lots of learning opportunities while your family has a fun and relaxing time.

The following list provides just a few examples to get your creative thought processes going:

  • Study of almost any historical event can be greatly enhanced by a visit to important sites related to that event. For example, study the Civil War and then plan a vacation that includes visits to actual battlefields. Or, when American history is being studied, plan a trip to Washington D.C.
  • Trips to oceans and beaches can include many activities that support biology and other science topics. Exploring tide pools is a great way to study marine biology. Taking a whale-watching boat trip is a great way to observe marine animals in their natural habitats.
  • "Re-create" a journey taken by earlier generations. Many famous journeys can be made much more real with your own recreation. For example, a study of the westward expansion of the United States can be much better understood with a drive across the Great Plains or by following the Oregon Trail.
  • Learn about geology and other physical sciences by taking a trip to the Grand Canyon and other geologic wonders.
  • Include stops on a vacation to visit areas where famous inventors, writers, politicians, and others lived to help students gain a better insight into those people.
  • Language studies can be greatly enhanced by visiting areas in which that language is spoken. For example, if your homeschool plans include Spanish, include a vacation to Mexico or other area where that is the dominant language. There is no better way to learn a language than being among people who actually use it.
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Reproduced from Absolute Beginner's Guide to Homeschooling, by Brad Miser, by permission of Pearson Education. Copyright © 2005 by Que Publishing. Please visit http://www.informit.com/store/product.aspx?isbn=0789732777 to order your own copy.


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