It was a cool Monday late September when Jay called to let me know that a series of vintage (1920's and 1930's) airplanes were on exhibit at Frederick's Regional Airport for the "National Air Tour". I looked out our school room window, propellers already spinning in my mind.
"Hmm... I'm not sure that I can re-arrange things, but I know that the twins would love it. And I would love it!" But I hesitated as I looked down at my planner: Review declarative and interrogative sentences / Study continents and oceans / Work on multiplication with two digits...
Turns out, the announcement of the impromptu field trip resulted in the twins soaring through their worksheets, so we were able to go! On the drive to the airport, we talked about some true aircraft classics: the legendary Ford Tri-Motor, the beautiful Stearman, and the most famous plane of all―the bright yellow Piper Cub.
We learned so much about the beginnings of aviation that day, and especially about the important role these planes played in U.S. Mail delivery. From barnstormers, transporters to acrobats―we enjoyed every single plane. Compared to today's jets, some of them looked like big clunkers, but a few looked agile and fun.
The boys sat in a few planes, pretended to be pilots, and imagined those white scarves trailing behind their necks as they flew the skies. We pictured those old planes sweeping across the sky and winning the hearts of pilots and people all over America.
It was a rich (and free!) history lesson for all of us. After seeing the icons of another era, we returned to our little school room―happy that we took advantage of a very special tour.
So, I encourage you to enjoy the opportunities that come your way, whether it's a fun field trip, or an impromptu excursion for a little fresh air on a crisp day. And for elementary students―I highly recommend checking out your local airport. It's an exciting place. Most airports sponsor fly-ins, so be sure to ask about that...
Meanwhile, stay faithful in teaching!