The story of the first Thanksgiving is well-known and often the source of lessons, programs, Pilgrim and Indian costumes and artwork this time of the year. It’s a story of perseverance, hardship and friendship that defines the human spirit. It is also a great source of some at-home lessons and research that could be a family endeavor.
I had the privilege of visiting the Plymouth Plantation in Plymouth, Massachusetts several years ago, and I got a whole new appreciation of the Pilgrims and the harshness of their lives. It is a working village set up just as the Pilgrims had it. It is basically a “living museum” where the workers dress like Pilgrims and go about their day just as the Pilgrims did. I was especially surprised by their houses. They were one-room cabins with no windows. The main feature was the fireplace which of course was for heating and cooking. The walls were coated in black soot, and the goats they raised wandered in and out of the houses.
That visit gave me a different perspective of how life really was for the Pilgrims. I am happy to tell you that you and your family can “visit” the Plymouth Plantation too via The First Thanksgiving Virtual Field Trips sponsored by Scholastic. There are videos and other resources you can use for some interesting at-home lessons about the first Thanksgiving. I think you and your family will enjoy your virtual field trip! Click here to view.