“Children are our legacy.”
STANDARDS BASED PROGRAMS
Our programs utilize our entire property including its wetlands, streams, meadows, forests, pond and vernal pool. They are designed to provide experiential, inquiry-based learning opportunities while supporting the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and Vermont’s Framework of Standards and Learning Opportunities (VFSLO). Through history and natural science themes, students explore big ideas, i.e., understandings that endure long after the details are forgotten, cultivate observation and inquiry skills, and engage in constructing evidence-based explanations.
Fall • Grades: K-1 & 2-3 • Length: 1 1/2 hours
Monarchs are the only butterflies to migrate north and south each year, yet no single individual completes the round-trip journey. Students explore the conservation of this magnificent butterfly, while learning about its habitat, life-cycle and migration, including tagging and releasing a monarch before it begins its fall journey to the mountains of Central Mexico. BIG IDEA: Interdependence; Cycles; and Structure and Function. NGSS: Link
The Buzz on Honey Bees
Fall • Grades: K-1 & 2-3 • Length: 1 1/2 hours
Who’s who in the hive? How is honey made and flowers pollinated? Students explore the world of honey bees with investigation, pantomime, and inspection of the bees in our observation hive. They examine the bee’s design, life-cycle, social structure and important role as a pollinator. BIG IDEA: Interdependence; Cycles and Structure and Function. NGSS Link:
Bee Friends: Know Your Pollinators
Fall & Spring Grades: 3-4 • Length: 1 1/2 hours
Designed to inspire curiosity and care for pollinators of all kinds, this program introduces students to who the native pollinators are, the vital role that pollinators play in agriculture and natural communities, and the steps we can take to promote and protect pollinator habitat in our schoolyards and backyards. Students record pollinator and plant interactions in the field, examine the characteristics of pollinators, dissect and identify parts of flowers, visit our observation hive, and learn how to incorporate pollinator friendly features into gardens and landscapes. BIG IDEA: Interdependence; Cycles; and Structure and Function. NGSS Link:
NEW! Bumble Bee Basics
Fall & Spring Grades: 2, 3-4 Length: 1 1/2 hours
Gentle and fuzzy, everyone has watched a bumble bee buzzing between flowers in summer; but what about the rest of the year? How do bumble bees overwinter? Where do they raise brood in the spring? How do they fly in the fall when it is chilly or raining? With indoor and outdoor activities, students examine the bumble bee’s life cycle, its habitat needs, and its vital role as a pollinator. They are introduced to the differences in color patterns between species, learn how to enhance pollinator habitat and may observe queens in search of nest sites, workers foraging or new queens preparing for winter. BIG IDEA: Interdependence; Cycles; Structure and Function. NGSS Link:
Fall • Grades: K-1 & 2-3 • Length: 1 hour
In our gardens, forests, fields and homes, spiders can be found, quietly focused on their important ecological role - capturing and eating insects. Students observe live spiders and build model spiders from their observations, discover the process of spiders capturing prey in a web, and go on a guided hunt to observe spiders, webs and record observations. We also examine the life cycle and vital ecological role of these terrestrial predators. BIG IDEA: Interdependence; Cycles; and Structure and Function. NGSS Link:
Wild & Wary: Vermont’s Turkeys
Fall • Grades: K-2 & 3-4 • Length: 1 1/2 hours
Unlike earlier times, the turkey we enjoy today isn’t a wild bird, but rather farm-raised. While tasty, the domestic turkey is not nearly as fascinating in behavior or development as its wild cousin. With slides, touchable artifacts, and interactive activities, students explore the history, habitat, life-cycle and behavior of Vermont’s wild turkeys. Our inquiry includes activities highlighting the importance of predators in shaping the turkey's behavior and survival strategies. BIG IDEA: Interdependence; Cycles; and Change over Time. NGSS Link:
Fall & Spring • Grades: 1-2 & 3-4 • Length: 1 1/2 - 2 hours
To discover the remarkable diversity of the pond community, students explore the life in and around Hildene’s pond using nets, magnifiers and field guides. They collect creatures from different pond habitats, make observations about their differences, and identify ways they are adapted to live in a watery world. They also work together to create a pond food web. BIG IDEA: Systems; Diversity; Interdependence; and Structure and Function. NGSS Link:
Streams: Life Beneath the Flow
Fall & Spring • Grades: 1-2 & 3-4 • Length: 1 1/2 hours
Students explore the variety of habitats and interconnected web of animals and plants within a stream. They catch and identify aquatic insects, build a river food web, and learn how insect life can teach us about a stream’s health. They also discover important adaptations that are vital for life in these ever-changing ecosystems. BIG IDEA: Interdependence; Systems; and Diversity. NGSS Link:
Wetlands are Working Lands
Fall • Grades 3-5 • Length 2 hours
Students investigate Hildene’s wetland to discover the indispensable properties and functions of these unique habitats. From a floating boardwalk that extends 600’ through the marsh, students assess the water quality based on the macroinvertebrate population, discover the characteristics of wetland soils, and examine the adaptations of wetland plants to further their understanding of the ecological importance of these ecosystems. BIG IDEA: Interdependence; Systems; Diversity; and Structure and Function. NGSS Link:
Vernal Pools: Unique Amphibian Nurseries
Spring • Grades: 3-5 • Length: 2 hours
With slides, investigation and observation of live animals, students discover the critical support vernal pools provide to certain amphibians. They examine the energy and nutrient source of these temporary pools, become familiar with some of the “obligate” vernal pool species and learn why these pools are called the “hatchery of the forest.” BIG IDEA: Interdependence; and Systems. NGSS Link:
Under and Over the Snow
Winter • Grades: 1-3 & 4-5 • Length: 2 hours
How do animals adapt to Vermont’s long cold winter? Through indoor and outdoor activities, students examine the survival strategies of animals in winter and learn basic track identification skills. They examine prints and track patterns, make their own tracking guides, learn to move like the mammals do, and practice their tracking skills in the woods nearby. BIG IDEA: Structure and Function; and Place. NGSS Link:
Goats, Gouda & Gastric Microbe
Spring • Grades: K-2 & 3-4 • Length: 1 1/2 hours
As students interact with the does and kids at our goat dairy, the life cycle, anatomy and care of goats are examined. While learning about the processes of milking and cheese, students participate in chores, identify goat products, bottle feed the kids and observe hand milking a doe. BIG IDEA: Cycles; and Structure and Function. NGSS Link:
Pullman Porters: Unsung Heroes; Former Slaves, Labor Organizers, Middle Class Citizens & Civil Rights Activists
Fall, Winter & Spring • Grades: 5-6 & 7-8 • Length: 2 1/2hours
Our restored 1903 wooden Pullman car, Sunbeam, provides the setting for students to discover the critical role that Pullman porters played in giving rise to America’s black middle class, the formation of the black labor movement, and the momentum for the civil rights movement; a slice of history that spans 100 years beginning with the Emancipation Proclamation.
Students role-play what it was like to travel and work on a Pullman car, use primary sources that relate to the era, construct a timeline of milestones in African American civil rights, and visit the mansion where Robert Lincoln conducted Pullman business when he was in Vermont. BIG IDEA (Fields of Knowledge): Historical Connections; Traditional and Social Histories; Human Rights; Forces of Unity and Disunity; Impact of Economic Systems; and Nature of Conflict. CCSS & VFSLP Link:
The Hollow School
Fall, Early Winter & Spring • Grades: 1-2 & 3-4 • Length: 11/2 hours
Our fully restored one-room schoolhouse provides the setting for students to experience the lessons and tasks of children in early Vermont schools. Our “school day” commences when the bell is rung. Role-playing 19th century scholars, students use reproduction texts, slates and quill pens for their lessons, which include memorization and recitation. They also play old time games during the recess break. BIG IDEA (Fields of Knowledge) Historical Connections. CCSS & VFSLP Link:
Fall, Winter & Spring • Grades: 1-3 & 4-6 • Length: 1 - 2 hours
In early America making crafts was an essential part of everyday life. Students make everyday household items like dipped candles or baskets. Increasing students’ appreciation of the early settler’s self-sufficiency, this program introduces each craft in an historical context. Choose from the list below the craft(s) you would like to do:
Dipped Candles 1 1/2 hours (1st-5th)
Pierced-Tin Candle Shades 1 hour (1st-5th)
Cornhusk Dolls 1 1/2 hours (3rd-6th)
Basket Weaving 2 hours (5th-6th)
BIG IDEA (Fields of Knowledge): Historical Connections; Movements and Settlements; Impact of Economic Systems. CCSS & VFSLP Link:
A Vermont Story: The Equinox Guards & Civil War Camp Life
Spring • Grades: 1-3 & 4-6 • Length: 1 1/2 hours
This program tells the story of the 87 young men from the Manchester area, the North Shire, who served in the Civil War. Our story, based primarily on soldiers’ letters and newspaper accounts, follows these men from their enlistment and training in 1861, to the Battle at Savage’s Station in 1862, where many of them were killed, to the reunions held years later. Students role-play actual members of the Equinox Guards. They practice roll call, drills, marches and other activities including letter writing, singing, food sampling and sewing. By making connections between family, community, Vermont history, and United States history, this program is a resource to augment Vermont history or Civil War curricula. BIG IDEA (Fields of Knowledge) Historical Connections; Forces of Unity and Disunity; and Nature of Conflict. CCSS & VFSLP Link:
Window To The Past
Fall, Winter & Spring • Grades: 3-12 • Length: 1 1/2 hours
Students take a tour of Hildene, built by presidential son Robert Lincoln and his wife Mary in 1905, to learn about the family and their lives at the turn of the century. Students also visit the exhibit The American Ideal: Abraham Lincoln and the Second Inaugural, which includes one of Lincoln’s stovepipe hats of which there are only three in existence.
Robert Lincoln, a captain of industry, served as president of the Pullman Company from 1901 to 1911. Students learn about his Pullman career through a visit to our fully restored 1903 Pullman car, Sunbeam. The interpretive exhibit “Many Voices” focuses on the Pullman Company that built the cars; the privileged families and executives who travelled in them and the Pullman porters who worked in them. The fourth voice is of those who visit the car and the conclusions they draw from the experience. BIG IDEA (Fields of Knowledge): Historical Connections; Forces of Unity and Disunity & Nature of Conflict. VFSLP Link:
Lincoln and the Telegraph: The Innovator with the Innovation
Fall, Winter & Spring • Grades 5-6 • Length: 1 1/2 hours
An innovator at heart, President Lincoln revolutionized the use of the telegraph during the Civil War. Lincoln used this new communications tool to gather information and assert his leadership to the front.
Students learn about the critical role of the telegraph in the Civil War, use telegraphs to send and receive messages that are combined to reveal one of Lincoln’s most important decisions and then view related artifacts in our exhibit, The American Ideal: Abraham Lincoln and the Second Inaugural.
BIG IDEA (Fields of Knowledge) Historical Connections; Forces of Unity and Disunity; and Nature of Conflict. CCSS & VFSLP Link:
Our mission: Values into Action
1005 Hildene Road, Post Office Box 377, Manchester, VT 05254 802 362-1788 www.hildene.org
For information call Diane Newton, Education Director, 802-367-7965 or email email@example.com.
Fees: Each school program costs $3 per student with the exception of the Pullman Porter and Window to the Past programs which are $5 per student. Groups are welcome to participate in more than one program during their visit. One adult chaperone admitted free for every 8 students. Additional adults are $5 each. Exceptions are made for special needs students.
Lunch, Trails & Farm Animals: Groups may enjoy their brown bag lunch in our picnic area and are also welcome to explore our walking trails. Interpretive signs along the Farm Trail highlight trees, shrubs, ferns and other natural features. This trail loops through Hildene Farm with our herd of goats and cheesemaking facility.
Photography & Video
You are welcome to take flash-free still photographs of your group’s activities. Please contact Diane Newton prior to your visit for permission to shoot video.
Please note we are a pet free campus. Thank you for your understanding.