I always wondered what I’d do if I worked from home and homeschooled my kids. Now that school is canceled and my work is closed for two weeks, we’re going to see how it goes. I’m sure there will be a lot of video games, movies, in addition to some mandatory outdoor time, but I also like to think that maybe we’ll do something educational too.
If you have that lofty goal too, read on! I found stuff that’s specifically for us, Nebraska families. So read on to find resources geared toward Nebraska history and Nebraska wildlife. Plus, I added some virtual tours of other places around the world because if you can’t travel to them right now, why not just pretend you can?
You can find plenty of free resources online for general history and nature, but I love it when you can find specific information that relates to your home state. So for us, that’s Nebraska.
History Nebraska is a great online resource. I just came across Nebraska Trailblazer publications that are designed for fourth-grade classrooms, but you can just as easily print them (or read them off the computer screen), too. Topics include:
Nebraska’s First Farmers
Fort Atkinson (Someday, you really ought to go check out the actual fort. It’s in Fort Calhoun. They weekends they have historical re-enactments are the best time to go.)
A Nebraska Childhood
What’s for Lunch? Food Choices of the 1890s
Banking in Nebraska
The State Capitol
Nebraska State Symbols
Red Cloud and the Sioux Nation
Aviation in Nebraska
Czechs in Nebraska
Conservation and Preservation
The Nebraska Commemorative Quarter
History Nebraska has a YouTube channel featuring some interesting interviews and they even have their own version of an “unboxing” video.
Nebraska Game and Parks
Nebraska Game and Parks is another great resource full of educational goodies. This page has lesson plans, videos, and maps all geared toward a better understanding of Nebraska wildlife and habits. There are even scavenger hunts.
The topics include: Birds and birding, Pollination and pollinators, Prairies, Animals and habitats (lower elementary), Water and wetlands, Life cycles, Soils and worms, Scavenger hunts, Threatened and Endangered Species.
The Durham Museum
The Durham Museum has started a great digital learning series geared toward kids in grades K-5. Each weekday morning at 10 a.m., they have a new session. Register for FREE at durammuseum.org. Subjects include pioneers, Native American life, and Lewis & Clark, for example.
Ashfall Fossil Beds
While nothing beats an actual visit to Ashfall Fossil Beds in northeastern Nebraska, there are a few online educational resources to learn bit more about this important site.
There are downloadable activity sheets including:
A Bellevue high school teacher has a website with some resources geared toward older kids. World Hindsight has world history and American government, as well as links to other sites that have lesson plans.
Virtual tours and virtual museums
I couldn’t find many Nebraska ones (still looking!). Omaha Children’s Museums’ “Diggin’ Dinos” special exhibit which is currently at the museum (which is closed through March 31). You can see some of the museum’s past exhibits’ virtual tours, too.
You can also take a virtual tour of Lincoln Children’s Museum.
Once you’re done virtually touring local museums, here are a few other museums, parks, and historic sites you can “visit”:
Virtual Tour of Yellowstone National Park
Corning Museum of Glass
Travel and Leisure has a list of 12 more gorgeous museums with virtual tours, too.
The best list I’ve found for virtual tours and 360-degree tours of monuments and historical sites can be found on this University of Nebraska at Omaha page.
I love museums, and many have online resources instead of virtual tours. I’ve written a post that includes a list of museums and educational websites with FREE, age-appropriate activities, games, coloring pages and scavenger hunts.