Home Study 2023

Our programs are designed to provide experiential and inquiry-based learning opportunities. Students explore big ideas, i.e., understandings that endure long after the details are forgotten. Programs span across our 412 acres which encompasses wetlands, streams, meadows, forests, ponds and vernal pools. Students practice skills such as asking relevant questions, making careful observations, communicating outcomes, and reflecting upon results. Next Generation Science Standards are incorporated into all offerings. Beginning January 9, the following programs will be available to homeschoolers for the Winter 2023 season:

COVID-19: Educators will follow CDC guidance on masking.

CLICK HERE to register

January 9:
Dipped Candles, 11:00am - 12pm
Pierced-Tin Candle Shades, 1:00 - 2:00pm

January 23:
Lincoln and the Telegraph, 10am - 11:30am

February 6:
Virtual Pullman Porters, 10:00 - 11:30am

February 27:
Under and Over the Snow, 10:00 - 12pm

March 13:
Winter Adaptations, 10:00 - 11:30am

March 27:
Windows to the Past, 10:00 - 11:30am 

April 10:
Cornhusk Dolls, 10:00 - 11:30am 



basket Historic Crafts

Grades 1-3, 4-6 • Length: 1 - 2 hours
OFFERED WINTER/SPRING, 2023 (see above for specific dates)

In early America making crafts was an essential part of everyday life. To help students understand what it was like to live in earlier times, when so many things we take for granted did not exist, they make everyday household items like dipped candles or baskets. Broadening 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 1st-5th Length: 1 hr
Pierced-Tin Candle Shades 1st-5th Length: 1 hr
Cornhusk Dolls 3rd-6th Length: 1 ½ hrs
Basket Weaving 5th-6th Length: 2 hrs

BIG IDEAS: Historical Connections; and Movements and Settlements. STANDARDS

President Abraham Lincoln Lincoln and the Telegraph: The Innovator with the Innovations

Grades 5-6 • Length: 1.5 hours
OFFERED JAN. 23, 10am - 11:30am
An innovator at heart, President Lincoln revolutionized the use of the telegraph during the Civil War. He used this new communications tool to gather information and assert his leadership to the front. Prior to Lincoln, rapid exchanges between the Commander-in-Chief and the generals in the field didn’t occur. 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 IDEAS: Historical Connections; Forces of Unity and Disunity and Nature of Conflict. STANDARDS

Windows to the Past, 2022/2023 programming Windows To The Past

Grades: 5-12 • Length: 1 1/2 hours
OFFERED MARCH 27, 10am - 11:30am
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 traveled 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 Historical Connections; Forces of Unity and Disunity & Nature of Conflict. STANDARDS

Pullman Porters, education program VIRTUAL: Pullman Porters: Unsung Heroes, Former Slaves, Labor Organizers, Middle Class Citizens & Civil Rights Activists

Grades: 6-8 • Length: 1.5 hours
OFFERED FEB. 6, 10am - 11:30am
During this live virtual program, students 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. This slice of history spans 100 years, beginning with the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863. Students engage in activities relating to what it was like to travel and work on a Pullman car and actively participate in discussion about the porters’ enduring fight for social change and justice in America. BIG IDEAS: Historical Connections; Human Rights; Impact of Economic Systems; and Nature of Conflict. STANDARDS

Black-Capped Chickadee, Adaptations, education programming Winter Adaptations: Coping with the Cold

Grades: 2-5 • Length: 1 - 1 1/2 hours
OFFERED MARCH 13, 10am - 11:30am
Colder temperatures and shorter days bring about many changes in the world around us. Students explore forest life through observation and exploration to discover the ways plants and trees adapt to winter’s challenges. They also examine the familiar black-capped chickadee to discover its remarkable survival strategies and complex language of calls. Weather permitting, students take a close look at the unique designs of snowflakes and examine the processes that form them. BIG IDEAS: Structure and Function; Cycles; and InterdependenceNGSS

Under and Over the Snow, education programming Under and Over the Snow

Grades: 1-3 & 4-5 • Length: 1 - 1 1/2 hours
OFFERED FEB. 27, 10am - 12pm
How do animals adapt to Vermont’s long cold winter? Through outdoor activities, students examine the survival strategies of animals in winter and learn basic track identification skills. They investigate prints and track patterns, learn to move like the mammals do, and practice their tracking skills in the woods nearby. BIG IDEAS: Structure and Function; and Place. NGSS