Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Teaching History During a School Break

Text: Teaching History During a School Break; background clip art of crowns and hearts; A Mom's Quest to Teach Logo

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No matter how you approach schooling or homeschooling, you might decide that you want to continue studying one or more subject areas during a school break. Perhaps you feel the need to continue with your lessons over a homeschool break because your kids really love learning. Maybe the learning needs to continue to catch up on certain subjects or plans. Whatever your reason, teaching history during a school break can be quite easy and fun. 

Over the Summer 

The most obvious break in school routine – whether you homeschool or not – is summer break. Many homeschooling families take breaks during the summer so that their children will have a similar time off as their friends who attend public or private schools. For many, they also want to be able to spend the time outdoors – perhaps working on the farm or homestead – or visiting nearby sites and attractions. Of course, some homeschooling families school during the summer and take breaks at other times of the year because the summer is too hot to be outdoors.

Visit Places of Historic Interest

What is the easiest way to continue with your history studies during a summer break? Field trips! When you plan a vacation, see if there is some way to incorporate a visit to a historical site. In some locations, it might be a lot easier to plan these side-trips (if visiting historical sites is not the focus of your vacation). For example, when visiting Charleston, SC, it was very easy for my husband and me to visit numerous historical sites, including Fort Sumter, Boone Hall, etc. The town is rich in history from the pre-Colonial era to modern-day history. But what about if you are visiting a beach town or a resort? Well, maybe the history might not be so obvious, but most towns have historical markers, and some even have historical societies that will open their doors for research. If it is a rainy day, why not see if there are any museums or historical societies you can visit for an afternoon? 

Text: A Mom's Quest to Teach; Teaching History During a School Break; photo of barrels in a museum in Charlestowne Landing

Holiday & Seasonal Celebrations 

One of the ways to easily incorporate history during the various holiday and seasonal celebrations is to study the history behind each holiday. There are many places you can go to for resources, including one of my favorites – You can see all of their offerings for Seasonal Resources and find just what you need to plan in advance – or if you are like me – find things for the holiday the day before.

You can find Adventures with Books where the lesson designers have listed books on themes like Pumpkins and provided activities to do in conjunction with the reading of those books, lessons to teach art with a holiday theme, or even Everyday Games with seasonal themes. We downloaded quite a few of the Fall ones to complete with our children. 

worksheets and games from

Use Resources Available to Teach about the Holidays

Another great part of having a membership to is their Christmas Corner. I am able to share a great number of Christmas-themed programs with our children. For example, last year we watched The Candy Maker's Christmas, which tells the tale of candy canes. There is a worksheet that accompanies the video we could fill out if wanted to and there are other lessons on about candy canes, too. We can spend the entire month of December using resources from that help us study the history of Christmas. 

My Teaching Library also offers great seasonal resources, and while these may not focus upon the history of the seasons or holidays, you can easily find worksheets, lapbooks, and notebooking pages that you can use supplement your homeschool lessons. I like that there are notebooking pages that let the children write down what they are learning and experiencing during the holiday season. 

worksheets; wordsearch from My Teaching Library - skeletons, pumpkin, Halloween-theme
Within these downloadable packets were several pages
that focused upon the holidays during the month of October. 

Halloween-themed writing pages from My Teaching Library

Kindergarten Halloween-themed worksheets from My Teaching Library

Go to the Movies 

Whether you visit a real movie theater or just watch movies at home, you can spend time during your homeschooling break watching documentaries or movies based upon real events. There are so many to choose from that you can probably find a movie for almost every area of history you might be studying in your homeschool. 

One of my favorite things to do with historical movies is to spend time comparing and contrasting the real events with those depicted in the movie. You can very easily watch the movie (or movies) during your break and then incorporate the lessons during your normal homeschooling schedule. For example, watch one or more movies about Queen Elizabeth and then read her speeches, read the works of her contemporaries, and compare them to the events depicted on the silver screen. 

Other Posts You Might Enjoy 

Engaging History: Bringing History to Life Series 

Engaging History: Renaissance 

Engaging History: Middle Ages

Engaging History: Modern America

Engaging History: American Civil War

Text: Engaging History: American Civil War; A Mom's Quest to Teach; photo of canon at Fort Sumter


  1. Even when you can't go to the historical places some of them have some amazing online resources as well.

    1. Yes! We were reading about a colonial house in Brooklyn, NY in our Notgrass textbook and found lots of activities to download and use this week from the house's website.

  2. I love this. We homeschool year round and part of that means we take breaks when we feel like we need them. We also sometimes take breaks from all but one-two subjects. It’s nice to be blessed enough to be able to conform school to my kids rather than conform my kids to school

  3. We've definitely done this before when they've fallen behind in a subject. It's not that much trouble to focus on something just like history for a while, and I love your ideas for keeping it fresh and fun