I love Europe! When I graduated from High School, the Christian school I attended took us on a 15 day trip to Europe. It was amazing!! And that’s where my love affair began. My husband and I have visited a few more times and our love for these places has just grown. Now, as my children’s teacher, I get to share my love for these countries that hold such beautiful memories in my heart.
I was delighted to see that this year in Classical Conversations (our home school group) we’ll be studying Medieval Europe and all those who made history: Joan of Arc, Marie Antoinette, Napoleon. Naturally, I would love to take my kids to visit the real thing, but that wasn’t feasible this year. So, we improvised!
Not far from our house is a small “European village”. It has a slew of delicious restaurants and even a “piazza” to enjoy the summer breeze. I thought I would share a sampling of the fun we had today. Whether you home school or not, finding a place like this in your town makes for a creative and fun experience for your kids and just might ignite a passion to travel and explore history for themselves. C’est parti!
Well, first, we needed “passports”. It started out as a summer movie pass and with a little glue, Voila! It became a passport.
After arriving, I stamped their “passports”, which they just thought was funny. (Of course I also pretended to be a tour guide and the border patrol.) I made tiny flags for each country and as we “arrived”, we would stop and put them on with a glue stick (not super creative, but it worked). She’s so proud of her French flag.
After filling our bellies we thought we’d stroll into the “piazza” and enjoy some reading about Paris and a little coloring of paper dolls from some of the countries we’ll be studying this year. I found print-outs on Education.com.
Then, we strolled around the shops and enjoyed the lovely landscape.
As we strolled, we talked about the Mona Lisa and how she was stolen and “Bastille Day” and it’s importance in French history. I pointed out the window boxes (that I’m going to have my husband put on the front of our house), just like I experienced in a quaint “walled city” called Rothenburg, Germany that I visited on my very first trip to Europe.
Here they are with their completed passports. We had so much fun! My hope for today, was that as we start this year, my girls would be interested in studying all the people and events that make European history all that it is. So many lives were lost and so many battles fought for the freedom, which these countries know today.