In school, I hated history!
My Texas history class met after lunch in a hot, stuffy room. The coach sat on his desk and read in monotone from a textbook–long lists of dates and battles and people who were dead. There weren’t even any good pictures. I struggled to stay awake.
Fast forward 25 years. I used a typical textbook mostly out of habit, but it was a bad habit. The reading was so boring it made my daughter cry. If homeschooling was going to be more than just “school at home”, there had to be a better way to teach!
I took a clue from my husband, who loves history. His dad’s job took him all over the state, and in the summer the family went along. On the way they heard stories of long-ago adventures, then they saw museums and mesas, climbed on board ships and over adobe ruins and dug for arrowheads. He remembered it all!
I remembered almost nothing, except for the time my 3rd grade teacher let us build an Indian teepee on the playground. “Fun” seemed to be a required element to learning, so I enrolled the kids in a co-op class. They did artwork and took field trips. They had fun…but at the end of the year they understood nothing about what happened in history, much less why it mattered.
I wanted my children to understand and remember the lessons history teaches us. Certainly there were many wonderful stories and websites, museums and landmarks available–and plenty of “good pictures.” If these resources could be organized, families could discover Texas history together in a way that was meaningful, memorable and fun.
That’s why I wrote Discover Texas. Now read about discovery learning and why it works!