This post has provided a good overview of how one can start conversations with their kids regarding U.S. history and government. This guide is beneficial for both teachers and parents as it gives parents insight into what goes into the teaching curriculum and how one can continue to apply the same principles at home.
It is essential to inform our young ones about the history of the United States because they will learn to appreciate and respect their country. They need to know how hard it was for our forefathers to build this country and how much blood and sweat they shed so we can enjoy all the freedom we have today. There are many ways in which you can educate your children about U.S history:
Talk about U.S. history with your children
When you teach your children about U.S. history, start with the basics and build up. This will help them understand what happened before and after each event in U.S. history. For example, if you start with the Civil War, explain what happened before and after it ended. This will help connect all the dots in their minds so they can see how one event affects another, how things change over time, and how some things stay the same throughout history, like the Constitution.
When you read books about U.S. history, talk about how the events described in the book relate to other things that happened in our country’s past or present. You might also want to point out how a particular event influenced future events in our nation’s history. Use books, television shows, movies, and other media as teaching tools when discussing U.S. history with your children. Teach them that Veterans Day is a time to remember and honor the nation’s brave men and women who have served in the military and get them a veterans day read aloud or bedtime story.
Give them a sense of place
A sense of place refers to the geographic location in which you live or grew up. It may also refer to the culture or environment that surrounds you. If you want your children to understand American history through reading, they need an intimate understanding of where it happened — geographically and culturally. This means showing them maps of where the battles took place and allowing them to travel around America to see firsthand where their ancestors lived, worked, and died (if possible). Show your children where they live by taking them on a tour of nearby historic sites and museums, including those in your community.
Play games that focus on U.S history
There are many different games out there that help teach kids about U.S. history, including games like Trivia Pursuit, Clue, Scrabble, and Monopoly can be helpful when teaching kids about the past, but they don’t always focus on the right things. For example, Trivia Pursuit will ask questions about presidents and other people associated with political events — not necessarily the most important aspects of our nation’s history. Instead of playing these games yourself or with your child as you normally would, change the rules slightly! For example, if you’re playing Monopoly or Clue, have each player take turns asking questions from their category instead of letting one person ask all of them at once. This way, everyone gets involved in learning about U.S. history, and no one has all the best answers because they know more than everyone else!
Visit museums or historic sites where you can see artifacts from past generations
If there’s a museum or historical site in your area, check it out. These places often have exhibits on different subjects from throughout American history. You can use these exhibits as a jumping-off point for discussions about what happened before and after what’s in them. Visiting museums is also an excellent way for kids to learn about history because they see things that have been preserved years ago. This can help them understand how people lived in different eras and why those items were important enough to save.