Also titled "How to Sneak Military History into a Modern Public School"
My son had a summer reading project due. He had to read at least three age-appropriate books (7th grade) and then complete a project having something to do with one of the books. He had already read some fruity animal fiction nonsense from the kid's section at the library and was fishing around for the third book and a project. SO . . . we check out this list of approved projects, and lo and behold there it is - build a model.
Down to the library we go to get a 7th grade level book on Pearl Harbor, knowing that I have at least two of the old Tamiya 1/48 A6M2 Zero kits in the stash. $7 a pop on discount from Hobby Lobby, small, simple to get together, and a single color camo scheme. Doesn't get any better than that. Here's the plan:
1. Read the book. Ask any questions, go over any details.
2. Talk about the equipment used. We already play a lot of Navy Field, so the kid knows about every surface vessel used, to include the Japanese CVs.
3. What do you know? The Tamiya Zero features decals for a plane that flew from the Akagi into the Pearl Harbor raid.
4. I'll build mine, he watches and builds his identical kit.
Now, he had some advantages over me when I was 12. I did not have an airbrush, compressor, 300 kit stash, every construction and painting supply I could think up, OR someone with 35 years building experience that would sit and show me how to do this stuff.
Anyway, here it is (I hope it shows). The only thing I ended up having to lay hands on the model for was to help him cut the tape on the canopy glass. Other than that, it's all 12 year old. Oh, and this is a clean build because the project was due. Weathering class begins if it makes it back home in one piece. At some point this week, the kids in his class are going to get to hear about Japanese Air Fleet one (Kido Butai), the Akagi, the A6M2 Zero, and the attack on Pearl Harbor. Take that, educrats!! >)
Oh, one last thing. No offense, but I don't really care whether this is the 100% right color for the Zero. I'm not gonna get into that debate, and that was not the point for this build. The last thing I read said to use Floquil's "old concrete", that's what I had, and so that's what we used.