A trip to the Grand Canyon with the kiddos seemed like the perfect opportunity to teach them so much about Geology, southwest history and archaeology, as well as plant and animal biology! We also visited another nearby national park, Montezuma's Castle. I found a variety of free resources so we focused our homeschool lessons on those topics the entire week before the trip. Each National Park also has a free Ranger Program. When you first arrive, head to the visitor's center to let the desk clerk know you'd like to sign your kids up. There's a short and really cool little ceremony where the kids raise their hands and take a Junior Ranger pledge. They receive a coloring book/activity guide and the family receives a schedule of the talks that will take place at the park throughout the day. We attended one on deer and moose that everyone found so interesting! All in all, our vacation was the perfect opportunity for our kiddos to experience everything they'd been learning firsthand.
|Little guy in the wilderness! Pic by Daddy.|
The Grand Canyon offers many educational resources--videos, lesson plans, and free printables for a variety of age groups. You can find those here. But the Grand Canyon isn't the only national park that offers these kinds of tools. Google for the national park website you want to visit or browse them by state to discover amazing places you may never even have known existed. At each park's website, you'll find a column to the left with various links. Click on Learn about the Park and then on Education, and then on Parks as Classrooms. You'll find a variety of resources!