There has been some debate in family travel circles about taking kids out of school to travel. It ranges from allowing kids to be absent for a few days, to withdrawing children from school altogether and “roadschooling” (traveling full-time and homeschooling children along the way). My daughter just started kindergarten this year so I find myself in that category of allowing her to miss a few days to travel. We’ve done that once already this school year when we recently spent a few days in Springfield, Illinois. While I am a firm believer that travel is an optimum form of education, I don’t want to deprive my daughter of the entire classroom experience, including the social aspects. She missed three days for our Springfield trip so, unless some amazing opportunity comes our way, I probably won’t take her out school again anytime soon to travel. Therefore, any trips we do take most likely will be to nearby destinations and be no longer than a weekend. Sounds depressing to some, I know, but living in a city like Chicago, we can get our culture and education in without leaving home.
One such way to do so is by attending stage performances and theater productions. We have an array of theatrical options to choose from, including delightful children’s programming from Emerald City Theatre Company, whose shows are specifically designed for children as young as infants to kids in their early teens. Emerald City produces shows out of three locations in Chicago: Emerald City Little Theatre in Lakeview, the Apollo Theater in Lincoln Park, and the Broadway Playhouse on the Magnificent Mile. Right now, I’ve got my sights on attending Bingo’s Birthday at the Little Theatre, where all of the shows are geared towards children aged 0-5, are interactive, and are in a safe environment for children to move about as they please. Judging by the video below, it looks as if both Lucia and Anthony will love Bingo’s Birthday!
Since we can’t travel as much as we’d like right now, one of the best ways to expose my children to new cultural experiences is through theater at Emerald City. If you’re in Chicago or plan on visiting, consider seeing one of the shows with your family!
I’m being compensated for publishing this post. As always, all thoughts and opinions expressed here are my own.