If your kids are at primary school at the moment, you’ll know the great enthusiasm with which their ‘topics’ are embraced. Over the last few years, my kids have delighted in activities as varied as dressing as evacuees, eating WWII ration food and marching around the playground as the Home Guard; to donning Tudor costume and meeting ‘Henry VIII’.
Primary schools are fantastic at bringing topics to life, and no doubt this will embed the information in their developing brains much better than just looking in a book or watching a video.
No doubt as they grow into teenagers this enthusiasm may wane, so why not harness it now and plan some family holidays or day trips that encompass their current topic? I’ve listed below some of the main topics covered between Year 2 and 6 and where the best places are to find out more about them. As some of these places take more than a day to look round, and days out can be very tiring (and not just on the children!), a top tip that worked really well for us was to book an apartment to stay in for a few days. Home From Home Management Ltd offer self-catering apartments in London which can be a really cost effective (and less exhausting!) way of visiting these attractions. Tube and bus travel is free for under-11s so getting around needn’t break the bank either.
Ancient Egyptians – The British Museum, Great Russell St, WC1B 3DG – Free
This museum houses the largest collection of Egyptian artefacts outside Cairo and your kids will be wowed by the real Egyptian Mummies!
Romans – The Guildhall Roman Amphitheatre, Guildhall Yard, EC2V 5AE – Free
The Guildhall houses the remains of London’s Roman Amphitheatre where crowds once gathered to watch wild animal fights, public executions and gladiator fights…no doubt of interest to most eight year old boys!
WWI – The Imperial War Museum, Lambeth Road, SE1 6HZ – Free
Currently undergoing a major refurbishment, this museum reopens in July 2014 for the centenary of WWI. It is set to house ‘ground breaking’ WWI galleries, plus Horrible Histories exhibitions – sure to entertain the whole family.
WWII – Churchill War Rooms, Clive Steps, King Charles Street, SW1A 2AQ – Free for children under 16 (there is a charge for adults).
A fascinating look at the WWII Cabinet war rooms that housed Winston Churchill and his government during the war. Experience the secrecy, the camaraderie and fear of the Blitz in this underground bunker.
Victorians – Victoria and Albert Museum, Cromwell Rd, SW7 2RL – Free
Where better to learn about the Victorians than in the V&A museum? From a Victorian clothes dressing up area to a re-building Crystal Palace activity, there is something to interest everyone.
Ancient Greece – The British Museum, Great Russell St, WC1B 3DG – Free
Back to the British Museum to ‘do’ Ancient Greece – which houses actual sculptures from the Parthenon, as well as Ancient Greek vases and other sculptures. A great opportunity to learn all about life in Ancient Greece.
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