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Field Trip Friday: Madame Tussauds, Washington DC

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I have always wanted to go to Madame Tussauds. When I was little, I used to always take the travel brochures from hotel lobbies and gas stations (you know the ones!) and “plan” vacations. Since we were in San Diego, I always had a brochure for Madame Tussauds in Hollywood. You have no idea how giddy it makes me to have moved to a city with one and to have finally got to go!. I’ve been working on a President Unit Study, which I am hoping to kick off with the kids in the fall, and Madame Tussauds in DC has the coolest exhibit with all 44 presidents and even many other historical figures.

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Luckily, the museum here is totally educational, so I could fulfill my childhood dream while pretending it was all for the kids. Seeing famous wax figures from pop culture is cool, but for a school field trip, you can’t beat the exhibits in DC. I’ve been working on a President Unit Study, which I am hoping to kick off with the kids in the fall, and our visit allowed the kids to “meet” all 44 presidents.

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When you walk in, they are set up in order, along with other figures from the same time period. There are signs on the walls with fun facts about the presidents detailing the important things they did, and some of the funny things you may have not known (William Howard Taft once got stuck in the White House bathtub).

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Our favorite part was that some of the figures were set up in such a way that you could step right into the scene with them. It sparked some really good conversations with the kids about history. It was neat seeing the changes in clothing and what was important to America at the time of each of the Presidents.

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It’s funny how some wax figures can bring history to life. They are so realistic, and for Bug and Mr. Man especially, they helped them understand more that history isn’t just stories read in books. History is about people more than anything else. Bug walked out of the museum wanting to learn more, and that’s exactly what a good field trip should do.

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I was a little worried that Little Miss wouldn’t enjoy herself or that the wax figures would scare her, but I think she had the most fun out of all of us. She LOVED the pop culture room, probably because they were playing “her jam” over the speakers. She went right over to dance with Beyonce and to tell jokes with Jimmy Fallon.

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And of course, I had some fun too. I got to “meet” Johnny Depp and Steven Colbert, and I was in hog heaven.

It totally lived up to the expectations of my 12-year-old self.

Field Trip Friday

If  you want to head to Madame Tussauds in DC: Driving is easy and there is parking within a block of the museum on 10th street, or take the metro to Metro Center. The museum is stroller friendly, and I would highly recommend it if you have little ones. Try to go first thing in the day, because it does get crowded if you hit it at the same time as a tour group. We were there at opening and had the place to ourselves. Allow an hour or two for your visit so you have time to read all the neat tidbits! 

This field trip experience was free for our family in exchange for blogging about our adventures. Thank you, Madame Tussauds for having us!

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