A mom and kids in the Fitch Kitchen

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Times: The Village is open 9:30 am to 4:00 pm. Workshop times vary; see below.

Join us for our October Home School Day! For this special day, we will focus on crafts inspired by Washington Irving’s famous spooky tale, “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.” From pumpkin receipts to working with the cider press, these activities will educate as well as celebrate the autumnal season. In addition to a guided tour led by a museum educator (see below for registration details), a Sleepy Hollow-themed scavenger hunt and a plot synopsis of the story will be available for all families attending this Home School Day.

Try out one of our Make History Guides as you explore on your own or sign up for a special hands-on workshop at the Museum Education Center (see below). Hands-on crafts are available for children under 5 on a drop-in basis throughout the day at Museum Education.

Home School Days are rain or shine programs. Registration fees are non-refundable unless the program is canceled by Old Sturbridge Village.

In Village Activities (including with Village admission):

Please check back the week of Home School Day for a more detailed list and a schedule of activities.

Cost is $10 per child ages 4-17 and over for full-day admission to Old Sturbridge Village. One adult per child is admitted at the discounted rate of $15. Additional adults pay the full price rate. Purchase admission tickets here. 

All quotes from “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” by Washington Irving (1820).

Hands-On Workshops

Hands-on workshop activities for children ages 6-17 are an additional $5-$12 per activity. Hands-on workshops are led by a Museum Teacher at the Museum Education Center. Pre-registration is required for Hands-On workshops. An adult parent or guardian needs to remain in Museum Education while their child is participating in a workshop. In addition, $10 per child admission is required for all programs and includes demonstrations, games, and performances in the Village. Registration closes 10 hours before the workshop start time. Please inquire at the Museum Education building to sign up for any remaining open slots after that time.

50 Minutes, $5 per workshop (unless otherwise noted)

Open-Hearth Cooking: Cooking with Pumpkin

10:30, Ages 8+ SOLD OUT
11:30, Ages 6+ SOLD OUT
1:30, Ages 10+ SOLD OUT

“In one part of the road leading to the church was found the saddle trampled in the dirt; the tracks of horses’ hoofs, deeply dented in the road and evidently at furious speed, were traced to the bridge, beyond which, on the bank of a broad part of the brook, where the water ran deep and black, was found the hat of the unfortunate Ichabod, and close beside it a spattered pumpkin.”

Follow a 19th-century “receipt” for Indian cake, a sweet cake featuring cornmeal and pumpkin! Together, you will mix up the cake and bake it in the open hearth. Ingredients will include: eggs, flour, butter, cornmeal, sugar, and pumpkin.

Sew and Stencil a Handkerchief

10:30, Ages 6+ SOLD OUT
11:30, Ages 10+ SOLD OUT
1:30, Ages 8+ SOLD OUT

“The revenue arising from his school was small, and would have been scarcely sufficient to furnish him with daily bread… he was, according to country custom in those parts, boarded and lodged at the houses of the farmers whose children he instructed. With these he lived successively a week at a time, thus going the rounds of the neighborhood, with all his worldly effects tied up in a cotton handkerchief.”

Use your sewing and stenciling skills to create your own decorative cloth! Older participants will hem the edge of their cloth. Everyone will use paint and period stencils to give it its own distinct flair. The cloth can be used to cover up your basket, as a handkerchief, or to carry around your worldly possessions like Ichabod Crane.

Make a Jacob’s Ladder

10:30, Ages 8+ SOLD OUT
11:30, Ages 8+ SOLD OUT

“In his hand he swayed a ferule, that scepter of despotic power… while on the desk before him might be seen sundry contraband articles and prohibited weapons, detected upon the persons of idle urchins, such as half-munched apples, popguns, whirligigs, fly-cages, and whole legions of rampant little paper gamecocks.”

Working with wood and ribbons, make a Jacob’s Ladder, a toy from the 1800s. Participants will learn stories, tricks, and visual illusions to do with this popular game piece.

Make a Whirligig

1:30, Ages 6+ SOLD OUT

Make a whirligig—a 19th-century spinning toy like a top, buzzsaw, or thaumotrope—just like the ones that Ichabod Crane confiscated from his pupils!

Carding and Weaving

10:30, Ages 10+
11:30, Ages 6+ SOLD OUT
1:30, Ages 8+

“In one corner stood a huge bag of wool, ready to be spun; in another, a quantity of linsey-woolsey just from the loom…”

Learn about the different fabrics people used in the 1830s for clothing, then try your hand at carding wool and weaving on a loom.

Make a Corn Husk Doll

10:30, Ages 6+ SOLD OUT
11:30, Ages 8+ SOLD OUT
1:30, Ages 8+

“To see him striding along the profile of a hill on a windy day, with his clothes bagging and fluttering about him, one might have mistaken him for the genius of famine descending upon the earth, or some scarecrow eloped from a cornfield.”

Corn was the most common grain grown in New England in the 1830s, and was usually saved for storage during the long winters. Participants will use the dried husks to create this traditional Native American toy. Make a Sleepy Hollow-inspired doll if you like—head optional!

Harvesting for the Winter

10:30, Ages 8+ SOLD OUT
11:30, Ages 6+ SOLD OUT
1:30, Ages 6+ SOLD OUT

“As Ichabod jogged slowly on his way, his eye, ever open to every symptom of culinary abundance, ranged with delight over the treasures of jolly autumn. On all sides he beheld vast store of apples; some hanging in oppressive opulence on the trees; some gathered into baskets and barrels for the market; others heaped up in rich piles for the cider-press. Farther on he beheld great fields of Indian corn, with its golden ears peeping from their leafy coverts, and holding out the promise of cakes and hasty-pudding…”

Let’s learn how families prepared food for the long winter. Participants will also try their hand at using a small cider press and process dried corn. Later, visit the Village’s cider press on your own.

Wood Block Printing and Paper Marbling

10:30, Ages 6+ SOLD OUT

Learn about the printing trade in the 1830s. Activities include block printing with seasonally themed wood blocks and paper marbling.

Make a Notebook

11:30, Ages 8+ SOLD OUT
1:30, Ages 10+ SOLD OUT

Using 19th-century bookbinding techniques, marbled paper, and a little bit of glue, create your own journal. This durable, hardcover notebook is perfect to jot down all your story ideas, spooky or otherwise!

Extended Workshops & Tours, 90-120 minutes, Prices Vary (see below)

Open-Hearth Cooking: Gourd Soup and Biscuits

10:30, Ages 9+ SOLD OUT

90 minutes, $10 per student

“Such heaped-up platters of cakes of various and almost indescribable kinds, known only to experienced Dutch housewives! There was the doughty doughnut And then there were apple pies, and peach pies, and pumpkin pies; besides slices of ham and smoked beef; and moreover delectable dishes of preserved plums, and peaches, and pears, and quinces; not to mention broiled shad and roasted chickens…”

Follow a 19th-century “receipt” for gourd soup, a tasty, seasonal soup made from squash. Participants will make biscuits to enjoy along with the soup. Ingredients will include: squash, butter, onions, vegetable broth, bread, flour, salt

Make a Decorative Floor Cloth

1:30, Ages 10+ SOLD OUT

90 minutes, $10 per student

Durable floor cloths were widely used in New England in the 1830s to decorate homes and block out drafts. Make your own smaller version of these popular and useful items out of canvas!

Make a Six-Board Chest

1:30, Ages 10+ SOLD OUT

120 minutes, $15 per student

“From this piazza, the wondering Ichabod entered the hall, which formed the centre of the mansion, and the place of usual residence. Here rows of resplendent pewter, ranged on a long dresser, dazzled his eyes…. a great ostrich egg was hung from the centre of the room, and a corner cupboard, knowingly left open, displayed immense treasures of old silver and well-mended china.”

Use hand tools to create your own small six-board chest, a lidded wooden box. You don’t need to have pewter in order to have a box to store all of your best and most valued treasures!

Sleepy Hollow Tour

10:30, Ages 6+  SOLD OUT

120 minutes, $5 per student

Take an immersive trip around the Village with an experienced tour guide!  We will stop at spots around the Village similar to those mentioned in “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” and discuss the story and the actual history of each stop. This tour is great for both new visitors to the museum as well as those who have been here many times before. (Registration required—meets at Museum Education. Note: Adults do not have to attend this tour with their children. Emergency contact information will be taken if the child attends this tour alone.)