When taking a long holiday, it makes sense for many parents to want to add in some education. Aside from keeping younger minds sharp for when they return to classes, fostering a life-long love of learning is one of the most important or beneficial things parents can help instil in their children. However, saying you want to do this and actually accomplishing it successfully can be very different things. Pushing too hard takes the fun out of the vacation for everyone involved, but not doing anything prevents anything good from happening. So prepare your campervan hire, follow these tips, and enjoy everything that this amazing nation has to offer.
Visit Places with Different Histories
Australia is a land teeming with many different interesting areas that each naturally make it easy to dive into some type of education. Take a look at historical forts or buildings and dive into the more interesting parts of local history. Play with maps and geography to see how the nation is laid out before seeing an area in person. Have any science fans? Visit zoos, national parks, or animal sanctuaries and emphasis the unique animals there, the history, or tie in old cultural beliefs or scientific discoveries to the area.
Planning to visit interesting areas can make it much easier to naturally slip in some educational content while still enjoying the experience.
Unique Entertaining Tours
Education doesn't have to be boring. Depending where you visit there are weird museums like Ripley's Believe It Or Not Museum that can automatically be engaging, or you can have tours of many national park destinations given by local aboriginal guides who weave storytelling and culture with the otherwise dry facts. Take a look at experiences that are a little bit different, interactive, or extraordinary. This makes it much easier to learn and enjoy.
Prepare Quizzes with Award System
Don't think about this like a traditional oral exam or pop quiz, but do a little research yourself. If an area is known for a rare tree or animal, have games. Spot 10, get a treat of some kind, or give a random fact for each one you see and get a prize. Make something that is fun, gives a reward (nothing wrong with half way decent bribe) and by having a bit of a game and an award system you're encouraging the practice of looking, listening, learning, and really engaging with the world around them.
Let the Kids Direct Their Interests
Everyone has different interests, and if something really sparks interest then it's up to you to fan those flames! Keep an eye out to see when the interest gets hooked naturally. Do you have a child who is all about looking for wildlife? Were the stories of a local Aboriginal guide enthralling them? What about a piece of military or warfare history? A certain type of art or craft? Remember that education can take many different forms and every child is different.
In fact, you never know when something completely new will get their attention. The interest could be mild, it could be heavy, or it could be absolutely enthralling and when those situations occur, it is time to encourage that pursuit.
After all, it is still a holiday and it is better to go deep in one area and have a ton of fun rather than drag down the trip trying to push too much.