Homeschooling in Florida

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Things to See & Do in Florida Back to Top
Brevard Museum of History & Natural Science
Cocoa, Florida
The mission of the Brevard Museum of History & Natural Science is to operate and maintain a museum for the education of the public about regional cultural heritage and to preserve historic artifacts and natural history specimens that support this educational mission. The Brevard Museum of History and Natural Science is located in Cocoa, Florida. Tucked away in a quiet residential neighborhood the museum boasts two wings of indoor exhibits and a 22-acre nature preserve backing up to the Eastern Florida State College Planetarium. Through curation and display, they invite visitors to explore the unique history of Brevard County. From Ice Age fossils to the Space Age Hubble telescope, they have something for everyone. The Brevard Museum is also home to the Florida Historical Society Archaeological Institute whose mission, in hand with the museum, is to educate the public about Florida archaeology through research, publication and outreach.
Castillo de San Marcos National Monument
Located in in St. Augustine, the Castillo de San Marcos, built 1672-1695, served primarily as an outpost of the Spanish Empire, guarding St. Augustine, the first permanent European settlement in the continental United States, and also protecting the sea route for treasure ships returning to Spain. Although the Castillo has served a number of nations throughout its history, it has never been taken by military force. During the 18th century, the Castillo went from Spanish control to British and back to the Spanish, all by treaty. The Spanish remained in power in Florida until the area was purchased by the United States in 1821. Called Fort Marion at this time, the Castillo was used by the US army until 1899. The park consists of the original historic Castillo fortress itself with its attendant grounds, some 25 total acres.
Colonial Spanish Quarter Museum
Saint Augustine, Florida
The Colonial Spanish Quarter is a living history museum. Costumed interpreters relive a time when St. Augustine was a remote outpost of the Spanish Empire. The Colonial Spanish Quarter illustrates the life of Spanish soldiers and their families in 1740 St. Augustine. Tradesmen go about their occupations in blacksmithing, carpentry, leatherworking, candlemaking and other trades. The visitor experiences how families lived, how they grew and cooked their food, and how they tended their livestock in 18th century St. Augustine. You will experience the sights, sounds and smells of a town in historic Spanish Florida.
De Soto National Memorial
in May of 1539, Hernando de Soto and an army of over 600 soldiers splashed ashore in the Tampa Bay area. They arrived in nine ships laden with supplies: two hundred and twenty horses, a herd of pigs, a pack of vicious war dogs, cannon, matchlock muskets, armor, tools and rations. It was everything they would need to execute the order of King Charles V: sail to La Florida and "conquer, populate and pacify" the land. But this expedition would never yield the gold and treasure these men so desperately sought. Instead, they marched from one village to the next, taking food and enslaving the native peoples to use as guides and porters. Hopes were dashed, fortunes squandered, and hundreds of lives lost on this calamitous journey. The de Soto expedition would change the face of the American Southeast forever, and cause Spain to drastically reevaluate her role in the New World. Ultimately, it was the first hand accounts of survivors, describing the native cultures and the richness of the land, which became the journey's enduring legacy. The mission of De Soto National Memorial is to preserve the controversial story of this four year, four thousand mile odyssey and interpret its significance in American history. Visitors can attend living history demonstrations, try on a piece of armor, or walk the nature trail through a Florida coastal landscape similar to the one encountered by conquistadors almost five hundred years ago.
Dry Tortugas National Park
Almost 70 miles (112.9 km) west of Key West lies a cluster of seven islands, composed of coral reefs and sand, called the Dry Tortugas. Along with the surrounding shoals and waters, they make up Dry Tortugas National Park. The area is known for its famous bird and marine life, and its legends of pirates and sunken gold. Fort Jefferson, one of the largest coastal forts ever built, is a central feature.
Fort Caroline National Memorial
Fort Caroline National Memorial was created to memorialize the Sixteenth Century French effort to establish a permanent colony in Florida. After initial exploration in 1562, the French established "la Caroline" in June 1564. Spanish forces arrived 15 months later. Marching north from their newly established beachhead (San Agustin) the Spanish captured la Caroline in September, 1565. Nothing remains of the original Fort de la Caroline; a near full-scale rendering of the fort, together with exhibits in the visitor center, provide information on the history of the French colony, their interaction with the native Timucua, and the colonists' brief struggle for survival.
Fort Matanzas National Monument
Throughout its history, the story of Fort Matanzas has been closely intertwined with that of the city of St. Augustine and the Castillo de San Marcos. This Spanish outpost fort was built in 1740-1742 to guard the Matanzas Inlet and to warn St. Augustine of British or other enemies approaching from the south. Fort Matanzas now serves as a reminder of the early Spanish empire in the New World. In addition, the park, which is located on barrier islands along the shores of the Atlantic Ocean and the Matanzas estuary, provides a natural habitat rich in wildlife with the salt marsh, scrub, and maritime hammock now protecting endangered and threatened species like the historic Fort Matanzas protected St. Augustine long ago.
Fort Menendez at Old Florida Museum
St. Augustine, Florida
Come explore Fort Menendez, meet some colorful characters from early Spanish St. Augustine and the Timucuan village of Seloy, and have lots of fun along the way! Join other adventurers on an interactive trip through time. Earn gold, buy, trade items, and wager with villagers and adventurers alike! Old Florida Museum offers four unique "HANDS-ON" programs designed to be entertaining as well as educational. Students experience life in St. Augustine through the struggles and successes of its people during distinct time periods of Florida’s history. All programs follow the Sunshine State Standards.
Halifax Historical Museum
Daytona Beach, Florida
Since 1986 the Halifax Historical Museum has been housed in the former Merchant's Bank Building located in the heart of the downtown historical district of Daytona Beach. The focus of the museum is to present the history of the greater Daytona Beach area with artifacts dating from 5,000 B.C. including the local Native Americans, the Spanish and British colonial eras, early pioneer families, beach auto racing, World War II and vintage toys. The Museum offers a research facility with old city directories, documents and maps as well as an extensive photographic and postcard collection.
Historical Museum of Southern Florida
Miami, Florida
HistoryMiami Museum gathers, interprets, and presents the history of Miami and the greater South Florida region as a cultural crossroads of the Americas. Through exhibitions, collections, and publications, the museum offers the community, its residents and visitors meaningful ways to connect to the rich past and ever-evolving future of the region and its diverse inhabitants. Their education programs are designed to provide age and grade-level appropriate experiences. Students compare and contrast the past and present and are encouraged to visualize and discuss what the future may be like based on patterns of the past. They also offer their Historic Site Visits Program, with tours of the museum, the Cape Florida Lighthouse, Lummus Park, Matheson Hammock Park, Miami Circle, Miami City Cemetery, Miami-Dade Count Courthouse, and Virginia Key Beach.
Mission San Luis
Tallahassee, Florida
A visit to Mission San Luis transports you back in time. Your destination is a community where Apalachee Indians and newcomers from Spain live in close proximity drawn together by religion as well as military and economic purpose. Modern day visitors to Mission San Luis discover a re-created community where time stands still. There they meet the people of San Luis going about the tasks that sustained life centuries ago. They walk the plaza where the Apalachees played their traditional ball games. They visit the most important structure in the Apalachee village, the council house, and also stop at the home of the Spanish Deputy Governor. Visitors are welcomed at the church built under the supervision of Franciscans, and at the friary where they lived. Mission San Luis is a very special place where history comes to life.
Ponce de Leon's Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park
St. Augustine, FL
This park is the original site of the nation's oldest city. Located in the area first explored by Juan Ponce de Leon in 1513 and settled by Pedro Menendez de Aviles in 1565, historic St. Augustine is the oldest successful European settlement in the United States. Colonial America started right here, 55 years before the Pilgrims landed on Plymouth Rock, and 42 years before Jamestown. With a long, rich history spanning nearly 500 years, the Fountain of Youth Park will delight and amaze you. Whether you visit for an hour or take all day, the 15 waterfront acres will provide you with hours of enjoyment.
San Marcos de Apalache Historic State Park
St. Marks, Florida
The many different flags welcoming visitors to the park demonstrate the colorful history of this site, from the first Spanish explorers to the present day. The history of this National Landmark began in 1528 when Panfilo de Narvaez arrived in the area with 300 men; however, the first fort was not built until 1679. Andrew Jackson occupied the fort for a brief time in the early 1800s. The museum at the park displays pottery and tools unearthed near the original fort and explains the history of the San Marcos site. A self-uided trail is open to visitors and guided tours are available with two weeks advance notice.
St. Augustine Pirate and Treasure Museum
St. Augustine, Florida
The St. Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum offers an educational, exciting, and timber-shivering museum experience that transports you and your family back in time over 300 years to Port Royal, Jamaica, at the height of the Golden Age of Piracy.
Timucuan Ecological & Historic Preserve
The 46,000 acre Timucuan Ecological and Historic Preserve was established to protect one of the last unspoiled coastal wetlands on the Atlantic Coast, and to preserve historic and prehistoric sites within the area. The estuarine ecosystem includes salt marsh, coastal dunes, and hardwood hammocks, all rich in native vegetation and animal life. Archaeological evidence indicates 6,000 years of human habitation in the area. The arrival of Europeans over 400 years ago resulted in exploration, colonization, agriculture, and commerce under the flags of France, Spain, Great Britain, the Confederacy, and the United States. The Preserve features the Fort Caroline National Memorial, Kingsley Plantation, and the Theodore Roosevelt Area.
Ximenez-Fatio House
Saint Augustine, Florida
The Ximenez-Fatio House Museum is one of St. Augustine's most authentic historic properties. The museum complex is located on Aviles Street, America's first platted thoroughfare, in the center of the city's oldest community, the Old Town area south of the Plaza. The property includes a ca. 1798 coquina stone house, the region's only detached kitchen building, a reconstructed ca. 1802 wash House and a new Visitor Center with state-of-the-art interactive exhibits and a museum store.

Teaching Tips & Ideas Back to Top
How I Teach a Large Family in a Relaxed, Classical Way: History
A look at teaching history across several grades using the classical method of education and a rotation of history every four years.
Knowledge Quest
Knowledge Quest offers historical outline maps and timelines designed for the interactive study of world history and geography.

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