What better way is there to have educational fun with your children, than to celebrate Columbus Day together? As we commemorate Christopher Columbus’s 1492 voyage from Spain to the Americas on October 11 this year, here are seven activities you can do with your children to join the festivities.
1. Parade. Many cities across the country hold an annual parade to honor the historical day. Check your local newspaper or online city calendar for a Columbus Day Parade in your area. You may not find a parade, but perhaps there are other events scheduled to celebrate this day.
2. Route Map. You and your children can create a map of the actual route Columbus took. This will not only help them learn about Columbus’s voyage, but it’s also a good chance to introduce the geography as it existed in the 15th century. Here is a website to help with this activity: http://www.enchantedlearning.com/crafts/columbus/map/
3. Build a boat. Constructing a boat out of Popsicle sticks or other materials is great for kids of all ages. It’s the perfect opportunity to discuss the Nina, the Pinta and the Santa Maria, and what life was like on the ships. You can teach them about the food, supplies and the jobs of the shipmates. Here are a couple of links to help with the details.
4. Coloring sheets are always fun, especially for younger children. Here is a link to a site with several color pages.
5. Museum trip. Check your local museums for exhibits about either Columbus or anything pertaining to the 15th century. They may even have Columbus-oriented arts & craft activities available.
6. Read stories about Columbus. Cuddle up with your children and read a storybook about Columbus and his travels. If your child can read, you can make him the reader. For a list of children’s Columbus books check here:
7. Create a picture book. This is an excellent way to support your child’s creativity and education at the same time. You can use cut outs, original drawings, or use items such as cotton balls and felt shapes to create texture.
Which ever way you chose to celebrate, your family is sure to have fun learning about one of history’s iconic events.