For a while now, my husband has had a passion for the story of the Wright Brothers. He is so passionate about it, he is planning on taking our family on an adventure, an adventure in movie making. More on that another time. However, their story is amazing. They were 2 boys in a large family. Their dad was a pastor. Their mom died at a young age. They saw a vision of flight and with little money watched that dream take place. They made a promise to their dad to never fly together that they kept all their life, except for the one time when they asked their dad for permission to do so. They met many famous people. They accomplished the impossible. I knew my older children knew about them. We have covered them in history, but my littles didn't. If we were going to take on this family project, all of them needed to know the story first.
There are many awesome books out there on the Wright Brothers. But, I do have my favorites.
I have these in our collection. Airborne is a biography of the Wright Brothers. Full of great pictures and lots of information. A great read. The other 2 are some of my favorites for a great overview of their story. The flight of adventure is great for younger listeners. The other is a chapter book from Landmark books. I had my 11 year old read it, and he loved it. As a side note, that series of books are absolutely excellent. If you can get your hands on any, do so!
These are a few others that are very fun. To Fly is a little longer, but a great read. Wee and the Wright Brothers is one of my all time favorites (my hubby has chatted with its author - squeal). Such a cute story of their story from a mouse's point of view. The last one is another one that is part of a larger series, the Getting to Know series (there are ones about inventors, artists, composers, etc.) These are another that are an easy read, and they have such funny little comic scenes in them. My children love any and all of these that we have read together.
These last 2 are about their sister. As I mentioned in the first paragraph, Orville and Wilbur were only 2 of a large family. There were 7 total children - Orville, Wilbur, a set of twins who died in infancy, 2 other brothers - Ruechlin and Lorin, and the only girl - Katharine. The Wright Sister is a biography about her. My Brothers' Flying Machine is the story of flight from her point of view. Both are excellent reading.
I will be picking from the above to read to my 2 youngest. The others, I will just leave lying around in our living room. I love doing that. They pick them up on their own and do further reading. Its a fun way to get more reading in, and you not having to do it. I will be following it up all this good reading with this awesome dramatization of their story from Your Story Hour. It is from the Heritage of our Country series. If you have never heard a Your Story Hour story, you are missing out on a real treat. Excellent listening for the whole family.
We recently took them to Washington, DC to see the exhibit about them at the Air and Space Museum. I find it one of my greatest joys to live within a half hour of DC and all its free museums and art galleries thanks to the Smithsonian. We travel there several times a year to see the various things there. We are also planning to travel to Kitty Hawk, right where they took their first successful flight. It will be exciting.
(us in front of the Wright Flyer in DC)
I plan to do an activity with the kids, though I haven't decided 100% which one. There are many great ideas out there. (Here is what just one search for Wright Brothers for kids garners on pinterest.) I also want to talk about flight and play with paper airplanes a bit. We also plan to build the Wright Flyer out of Lego! I found a how to on that in our most recent Lego book purchase, Brick History by Warren Elsmore. I also built a custom Orville and Wilbur who will be travelling around with us as we make our documentary.
Here are Lego Orville and Wilbur visiting the exhibit at Air and Space
I am excited to be on the journey with my family. As I said before, Orville and Wilbur in Lego will be travelling with us. And, I plan to journal about our travels and discoveries on my blog here. You can also follow along with us on my instagram page (link on side bar). What do you know about them? Got any gems you want to share? Post it in the comments below.