Quote Originally Posted by Phillygirl View Post
This is a sin. I blame not only the schools, but the parents. There's not a trip that I take with the kids that we don't talk about history in some fashion. I also have "atlas quizzes". One child has the atlas and chooses topic or states from the atlas to ask questions from...it might be naming the state capital, or guessing the state nicknames, etc.

Now, every time we go on a trip the kid in the front seat always reaches for the atlas and starts the game him/herself.

My parents were by no means rich, but the few vacations we took always involved some sort of history, whether it was in Boston, Williamsburg, D.C. or just a visit to our local Revolutionary War Battlefield.

I always try to talk about current events with the kids as well, to make certain they have at least some connection to what is going on in the world through politics, government, war, etc.
Multi-child families: I think many things are in play. When I was five I had two older siblings. My best friend had two older siblings. Life was a contest. We wanted to be as smart and knowledgeable as the older kids. We wanted to read. We wanted to learn. We thought we wanted to go to school , and had no idea how public school would try to kill that in us. I was fortunate, my mom saw it happening and put my middle sister and myself into private school Celeste liked public school. Public or private, we all wanted to be in the 1st track, we wanted to be the smartest, and then something happened. We figured out that it didn't take all that much to be better academically than most people.

Family dinner: When you eat dinner with your entire family, including extended family on many occasions, you hear adult conversation, proper grammar, and words that you don't know. My best friend and I would sit around on a rainy day in the summer, testing each other on the word lists in the back of the Encyclopedia Britannica. The lists were organized by theoretical grade level (I have no idea what the standard was) and we would push ourselves higher and higher. We practically memorized that book, and yet neither of us ever won a spelling bee. Spelling Bee was big business in our world; you got to go to the big one in Wilmington. And I did go to the Spelling Bee in Wilmington, because my middle sister did win. I still enjoyed it, and we went to the Franklin Museum which I adored (The Heart).

Family Vacations: I have never been to Disneyland or Disneyworld. I have never been to a theme park with my parents. Our Family vacations that I remember always included historical or educational stuff: DC, Arlington, ALexandria, Philadelphia, Williamsburg (premarriott) , Luray Caverns, Atlanta, etc... Even when we would come to where I now live, we would go to Ft Desoto and explore. Also, my parents never scheduled the vacation so tightly that we couldn't stop and read roadside markers or go to some historical site as long as it was in the budget. My poor dad endured many a lost detour because something wasn't really right off the "highway" (it's a generous name for two lane roads in the sixties).

TV- Our house had one TV until 1974. My parents didn't get to watch sports or silliness until we had all gotten drivers licenses.