“Tell me a history story,” Milly said.
That’s been a popular request lately. I’ve always enjoyed telling her about history. One of the first times was a year or so ago when we were sitting outside the federal courthouse downtown looking out across the Cape Fear River to the Battleship North Carolina. I tried to tell her a bit about World War II, who the good guys were, who the bad guys were, how it started, how America got into it and some of the major points. Heady stuff for a five-year-old I suppose, but she seemed to like listening.
Actually, I take that back. The first time she showed real interest in history was when we went to Old Brunswick Town. She asked all kinds of questions about what life was like back around the Colonial and Revolutionary times. She’d ask about history now and then after that, but it really kicked into being a regular request more recently.
It used to be she’d always ask for me to tell her a story, any kind of story, and I’d make up fantasy adventures. Lately though, she’s been asking for history stories. Sometimes I’ll tell her something off the top of my head, but I’ve been running out of good stories, so lately I’ve taken to the internet to find stories for her. If we’re at home, I’ll use a laser pointer on a map hanging on the dining room wall to show her where the story is taking place. History and geography.
On the way home from visiting the family today, she asked me to tell her a history story. I think it was Tristen’s idea to tell her about Amelia Earhart, so I pulled up the Wikipedia entry on her and started reading that, explaining things as I went. Milly often holds her hand up to interject questions too.
I really didn’t know all that much about Amelia Earhart, so I learned things too. Amelia Earhart was a terrific rolemodel for my girl. She was adventurous, obviously, but she was also into science and helping people. Her nickname was even Millie.
My Milly fell asleep while I was reading, but we were on a two-and-a-half hour car trip and I have no idea how long it took for her and her cousin Addy to fall asleep on the couch last night. We weren’t an hour into the trip, so her catching up on some sleep was probably for the best. I like to think she was dreaming of adventures.