How To Keep Your History Nut Happy This Summer

23/06/2009 20:16 | Updated 22 May 2015

When I was a child at school in Belfast, our history lessons basically consisted of a very stern nun telling us that the English had it in for us all along, but not to worry, we were still the best.

But something must have changed about the way children are taught history, because I keep meeting kids who are passionate about Tudor times, Saxons and everything way back to cavemen.

My Story series of historical diaries.

But since a hot summer is predicted this year, here are some daytrips to keep you all occupied:

  • English Heritage have a huge range of history based activities on offer all around the UK. Find out what's going on near you at this link. Their events have something for everyone, from Tudors to Romans to Medieval knights.
  • The Festival of History in Northamptonshire on the 25th and 26th of July promises over 2000 years of history packed into one weekend.
  • Discover the history within your own family as young people are encouraged to talk to older relatives and record their memories at the Keep The Memories Alive website.
  • From the beginning of July, the National Trust will have a free downloadable wall planner of events for families available here, with suggestions for things to do on every day of the summer holidays. So as soon as they start moaning "I'm boooorrrred", check it out and pick out a day trip you'll all enjoy.
  • If you're in Jersey over the summer, the Jersey Occupation Trail has just been launched to show people what life was like on the island during the German occupation of World War II. You can download it in PDF form from here.
  • The Natural History Museum in London is still free to visit, though alas you can't stay all night to see if the exhibits come to life like they do in Night at the Museum. I'd like to think they do. They do, don't they?
  • If you can't make it to the Natural History Museum yourself, children's summer school Purple Dragon will take them on your behalf, as part of its range of activities.
  • The Horrible Histories Trenches exhibition opens at the Imperial War Museum in London on the 18th of July. Full details of opening hours etc here. This exhibition marries the text of the books with hands on activities to illustrate life in the trenches of the First World War.
  • If you can't make it to London, the Horrible Histories stage play about the First and Second World Wars is touring the country over the summer.
  • In York, there are a series of events planned throughout the next few months to explore the city's Tudor history.
  • And if your day out does get rained off, why not visit the Time Travellers Go website instead? This site offers history themed games for children.

If you hear of any more history related events, post them in the comments box below. There are six long weeks of school holidays, so I'm sure we all could do with your ideas!

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