Yesterday, we had our homeschool group over and we had some Colonial Day fun. (This is something I “borrowed” from my days as a Kindergarten teacher.) The kids had some hands-on centers in which they learned about the life of the Pilgrims.
Here are some pictures of our fun:
We read Pilgrims of Plymouth by Susan E. Goodman. This is a National Geographic Society book and is great for the younger ages. Not too many words, but packed with lots of photos and great information on Pilgrim life.
After learning a little about the Pilgrims, the kids rotated to some fun Colonial centers. Since there were three mamas, we each “manned” a center with each center lasting about 15-20 minutes.
CENTER 1: Playing Games– The cup game was originally made with a wooden cup and a ball of rags tied to a piece of yarn.
Materials: pencils, masking tape, Styrofoam (or paper) cups, cut pieces of yarn, half sheets of paper
- Punch one small hole in the bottom of each cup with the lead of a pencil.
- Help children string the piece of yarn through the hole.
- Help each child tie a knot in the yarn inside the cup.
- Tape the outside bottom with the masking tape so it will hold.
- Have the children ball up a half sheet of paper.
- Help the children wrap masking tape around the paper, making sure the yarn also gets taped inside the paper “ball”.
- Let the kids try tossing their “ball” into the air and catching it in the cup.
Center 1 Pictures:
CENTER 2: Weaving- The pilgrims probably would have weaved some of their own clothing and baskets. This was the job primarily of the women and young girls.
Materials: glue, scissors, orange construction paper folder with lines drawn, and brown construction paper strips
- Help children cut the folded orange construction paper on the drawn lines, making sure they DO NOT cut all the way through to the end of the paper.
- After they have cut the lines, have them unfold the orange construction paper.
- Take a piece of brown construction paper strip (cut about 1.5 inches wide) and weave over and under the orange slits. Then, take another and weave it the opposite way. You will probably need about 6 for the entire mat.
- After weaving the brown strips, place small dots of glue for them on each end of the brown paper so it will stay.
Center 2 Pictures:
CENTER 3: A Day in the Life of a Pilgrim
Materials: writing paper (I used the type with the blank space at the top and writing lines below), pencil, crayons, Sarah Morton’s Day: A Day in the Life of a Pilgrim Girl & Samuel Eaton’s Day: A Day in the Life of a Pilgrim Boy– both books are by Kate Waters.
- Look through the pictures from these two books and have the kids list things that Sarah and Samuel had to do (chores, responsibilities, etc.).
- After looking at both books, brainstorm together some things that we’re glad we don’t have to do anymore that they had to do.
- Give each child a piece of writing paper with the starter sentence, “I am glad I do not have to…”. Show them an example (my example was “I am glad I do not have to fetch water because it was a lot work.”). They are to finish the sentence and illustrate a picture to go with it.
Center 3 Pictures:
I don’t know about you, but doing all these activities gets me in the Thanksgiving mood! And watching these little ones learn about new things and have fun in the process is even more rewarding.
Thank you for joining This Reading Mama on a literacy journey!
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