Educational Experiences at Magic Kingdom®

by Mar 13, 2019

It’s the dilemma every parent thinks about when planning a Walt Disney World® vacation: whether to pull children out of school for a few days or not. As a full-time teacher myself, I understand this dilemma. School is important, but family memories are as well. The great news is that a Walt Disney World® vacation can also be very educational! In the first article in this Educational Opportunities series, we are highlighting some educational activities at Disney’s Magic Kingdom® Park, and why teachers (and principals) would consider them educational:

 

The Hall of Presidents

 

The Hall of Presidents is an attraction located in Liberty Square. This Audio-Animatronic®  and multi-media show features all 45 presidents of the United States and the stories of America’s history.  It has been a part of Magic Kingdom since opening day on October 1, 1971.

The attraction is housed in a building modeled after Philadelphia’s Independence Hall, and features a short film illustrating the history of several American presidencies, including George Washington, Andrew Jackson, Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and John F. Kennedy. The film is followed by a stage presentation of all the presidents in Audio-Animatronic form.

 

 

 

 

it’s a small world® Attraction

 

This iconic ride features Audio-Animatronic® children from around the world. Each scene includes geographical icons, cultural aspects (like dance and dress), and language from around the globe.

Educational extension before your trip: For younger children, you could have your student research a country, then while on the ride, have them photograph the audio-animatronics and scenery that match that country. For older children, they could do a report on how the Audio-Animatronic® represent their countries or cultures.

 

 

 

Walt Disney’s Carousel of Progress

 

This Audio-Animatronic® show/ride, originally created by Walt Disney himself for the 1964-1965 New York World’s Fair, takes visitors on a carousel of progress from the turn of the 20th Century to the roaring ‘20s, through the ‘40s, and into the present. Each scene shows technology new to the era and describes how that technology makes life more convenient.

Educational extension before or after your trip: Have your student research an inventor or invention featured in the show and describe how that invention helped make life more comfortable during that time.

 

 

 

Liberty Square Riverboat

 

Guests can board the steamboat and take a leisurely trip around the Rivers of America to view scenes from an early American settlement, a Native American village, and more.

Educational extension before or after your trip: Have your student research transportation modes in American history, including the steamboat.

 

 

 

Liberty Square Area

 

Liberty Square opened as part of Walt Disney World’®s grand opening on October 1, 1971. This area of the park was designed to represent the architectural progression through time and geographically across the United States. It begins with the Haunted Mansion, which represents the 1670/80s in upstate New York, and continues clockwise around the Rivers of America into Frontierland with Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, which takes place during the 1880s in southern California. Colonial era items are also represented with a replica of the House of Burgesses which features Paul Revere’s lanterns signifying “two if by sea” in an upstairs window, as well as a replica of the Liberty Bell replica was cast from the mold of the actual Liberty Bell and architectural representations of each of the original 13 colonies. The state flags of each of the original 13 states, as well as the American flag, fly in a plaza in the center of Liberty Square.

In the center of this land stands the Liberty Tree, which is an actual 100-year-old oak found on the property and transplanted, with a younger oak grafted into the base. The tree has 13 lanterns hung from it to represent the 13 original colonies.

Educational extension before or after your trip: Have your student research the architecture of the United States, the history of the US, or do a project on the original 13 colonies.

 

 

 

 

Main Street Vehicles

 

Guests can climb aboard a vintage horse-drawn trolley, double-decker omnibus, fire engine, or an old-fashioned car and take a ride down Main Street, U.S.A.®. These vehicles usually run from park opening until only 10:15 a.m. and offer one-way rides from Town Square to Cinderella Castle and vice versa. It varies which vehicles are out each day.

Educational extension before or after your trip: Have your student research transportation modes in American history, including one of these vehicles.

 

 

Dapper Dans

 

These performers can be found along Main Street, U.S.A.® singing classics, tap dancing, and performing vaudeville acts, performing 9 sets a day, 7 days a week. They can be found on the horse-drawn trolley in the morning, and all over Main Street, U.S.A.® during the afternoon. At 5 pm, the quartet joins the Main Street Philharmonic and the Magic Kingdom Security Color Guard for the Flag Retreat Ceremony.

Educational extension before or after your trip: Have your student research the history of vaudeville or draw a picture of the Barbershop Quartet in their vintage outfits.

 

Literature Behind the Rides

 

In addition to those listed above, many of the attractions in the Magic Kingdom® Park are based on classic literature. 

  • The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh (books by A. A. Milne)
  • Mad Tea Party (Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll)
  • Peter Pan’s Flight® Attraction (Peter Pan by J. M. Barrie)
  • Swiss Family Treehouse (Swiss Family Robinson by Johann David Wyss)
  • Tom Sawyer Island (The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain)

 

Educational extension before or after your trip: Have your students read a book that inspired the ride, and then do a book report on that novel. 

For parents trying to make the tough decision on whether or not to pull their children out of school for a few days to make magical memories, these educational experiences can help ease their minds a bit.

 

~~

All Key to the World Travel® Advisors are experts and offer the highest level of exemplary customer service. Contact your travel advisor to book your vacation, or click here to request a quote today!

 

 

 

 

Hannah Gribble

Hannah Gribble

Travel Advisor

Contact Hannah today, using the links below!

 

Travel Compass Blog

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Categories

Theme Park Professor - Class is in sessions!