Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Spring Homeschool Day at Conner Prairie ~ April 30th

Conner Prairie, living history, homeschooling, road trip

Spring! It it finally here, and most of our friends are looking for any good reason to get out of the house and go exploring. Here is a great reason: Conner Prairie is hosting its first homeschool day of the year on Tuesday, April 30th from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.!

The idea of a homeschool day at Conner Prairie was launched a few years ago. It is an opportunity for homeschool families to visit Conner Prairie at the school field trip rate, without needing 15 kids to get the reduced rate. It was an instant hit, and over time, a second day was added. Well thanks to popular demand, there will be three homeschool days at Conner Prairie this year: April 30th, August 27th, and September 11th. To see the details on the reduced rate for these days, visit this page on Conner Prairie's website.

If you've never been to Conner Prairie, now is the time to go. If you've been before and loved it - go again! Many of you know that we raised our girls with a huge emphasis towards hands-on learning. I nicknamed it E3 learning: Eclectic Experiential Education. Conner Prairie was always a place where they could touch and do. First as members, and then as they got older, they were even more involved as they each served several years in the Conner Prairie Youth Volunteer Program. Their experiences were second to none. The best part is, whether you visit Conner Prairie one time, ten times or 100 times, you will have fun learning: about Indiana's past, about natural resources, and about yourself! Arlene's favorite was always a tie between the Civil War Journey and the Loom House. When you come on Homeschool Day, keep an eye out, she is sure to be around somewhere!

I highly encourage homeschooling families to get a membership to Conner Prairie because it is such a wonderful resource, and the membership is a way to benefit both the museum and your family. For those who live far away, or who have never visited Conner Prairie and are not sure if it would be a good fit for them, a chance to take a road trip for homeschool day is ideal. 

Sometimes people ask of homeschool day is too crowded. The short answer is No. Conner Prairie does not schedule other school tours on these days, so it is just you, a thousand or so of your closest, or soon to be, homeschooling friends, and a reasonable number of daily visitors. I've never found the grounds to feel really crowded unless there are more than 5000 visitors... and so far, they've not reached that number on a homeschool day. Imagine if the state homeschool convention took place outdoors, and had more games and less books,... you will see homeschooling families from all around the state having fun and learning about Indiana's past.

If you already have a membership to Conner Prairie, I challenge you to invite at least two friends (and their children) to join you on homeschool day. Be an ambassador and show them how much fun hands-on learning can be. Offer to be the one to bring lunch to eat outside the Welcome Center on the picnic benches, or treat them to ice cream at the Cafe on the Commons. You already know you love visiting Conner Prairie, so tell your friends about it!

Still wondering if you should come? The answer is YES! In 2016 Conner Prairie added Treetop Outpost, one of our favorite places to hang out on the grounds. Imagine if your dad had actually built you the treehouse of your dreams... that comes close. You can read more about it by visiting this post I wrote a while ago about Treetop. It is a little bit like Tedd Tripp meets Richard Louv when you get out there. So much to do and see, and lots of time to interact with your children.

Lest I forget to mention it... there are already a LOT of new baby animals in the Animal Encounters barn this season! This is one of the working farm parts of Conner Prairie, where they strive to preserve and expand their heritage breeds of livestock. You might see the new Arapawa kids (goats) or the Tunis lambs! They are so cute! I've already shared a couple pictures on our Instagram feed, and I know there will be more soon. :)

So stop wondering if you want to come to the Spring Homeschool Day and get busy planning for it! Text your friends, facebook message your groupies, and get ready to pack up your car, van or SUV for an unforgettable day of fun and learning at one of the most unique historic places you will ever visit!

It is only two weeks away! 

See you on April 30th! We will be there, will you?

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