Sunday, June 17, 2012

Real life history lessons

I try to plan something fun for us to do together as a family for Father's day each year.  My husband is usually busy working and we often feel like we don't get to spend nearly enough time together.  So Father's day is the prefect time to take off and make some fun family memories.  Today my husband suggest we go and visit a local museum that we had never been to.

My husband has collected swords and knives since before I even knew him so it was only fitting that we spend father's day at the Higgins Armory Museum.



My three boys were overjoyed to hear we'd be spending the day looking at swords, suits of armor, and all that fun medieval weaponry.  I must admit the minute my husband suggested this outing I was already thinking- wow! a great homeschooling/ learning opportunity.  And boy was I right!

Four floors of information and a wonderful demonstration in which two of the three boys volunteered to go on-stage.  It was a great, fun, and wonderfully educational father's day. 
              
Alec was called on- stage to volunteer how chain mail kept knights safe from swords; they put a large piece of chain mail in his hands and ran a few different swords across his hands; he was so brave and didn't look at all nervous that he might get cut. 



Ian was called up on stage to try on various parts of the suit of armor to feel how much extra weight the knights had to carry around.  Since no one else in the audience wanted to volunteer, Alec got to go up onstage again and help dress Ian, acting as a Paige.  Even with just a chest plate and helmet Ian had a hard time walking around.   


When the show was over all the dads (who wanted to participate) got Knighted and my kids called my husband "sir daddy" for the rest of the afternoon.  Plus as an added bonus they got to see what a knighting ceremony looked like.

The second floor was, by far, the family favorite.  They had a life size chess set, which the boys are just learning how to play.  There was a huge puppet theater, a dress- up box, a few different versions of jousting tournaments, swords to lift so you could feel the weight, as well as a cross bow you could pull back that would measure how far your arrow would fly.

You could try on helmets, chain mail, and various pieces of armor.  There were blocks, both large and small, for building your own castle.  My two older boys joined in with a group of boys their age and built a huge fortress with the large soft blocks. 

They learned so much history today that they'll remember for years to come.
 





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