Homeschool Programs

Historic New England presents our award-winning school programs specifically for homeschool families

Once each month, join Historic New England at one of our properties for a program for homeschool families.

For each program:

There must be a minimum of 5 children registered for programs to run. Full payment is due at the time of registration and is non-refundable (unless program is cancelled by us due to under-enrollment). No registrations will be accepted on the day of the program.

Questions? Email

Sample Programs

The Camera's Eye

Use your camera eye to take in the landscape at Hamilton House as Elise Tyson did in the early 1900s.

  • The Camera's Eye

    Use your camera eye to take in the landscape at Hamilton House as Elise Tyson did in the early 1900s.

  • Springtime Exploration

    Explore seaside Watson Farm and visit the Red Devon cattle.

2017 Homeschool Programs

Tuesday, February 28: Green House and Green Thumbs, Lyman Estate, Waltham, Mass. As students explore the Lyman mansion and its lush greenhouses, they will learn how warm climate plants thrived for hundreds of years with the help of solar energy. Students will develop a “green thumb” by learning how to care for different plant species and create a paper greenhouse to take with them. Capacity: 24 people. Ages: 6-12.

Tuesday, March 21: Oceania in Salem: Art and Culture of the Pacific Island, Phillips House, Salem, Mass. Disney’s Moana introduces viewers to many aspects of ancient life in the Pacific Islands, from the demigod Maui and the many uses of coconuts to tapa (bark-cloth) and outrigger canoes. While living in Hawaii in the 1800s, the Phillips family developed a passion for Oceanic culture. During this program, explore items from their collection, listen to legends of Maui, and create a tapa stamp design. Capacity: 24 people. Ages: 6-12.

Please Note: Due to popular demand, Oceania in Salem: Art and Culture of the Pacific Island, Phillips House, Salem, Mass. was repeated on Friday, April 21!

Tuesday, May 16: An Abundance of Boxes, Ceramics, and Decoys: The ACDs of Collecting at Cogswell’s Grant, Essex, Mass. The owners of Cogswell’s Grant were passionate collectors of American folk art and filled their summer home in Essex with treasures. During the program, explore the house to discover stories of the past embodied in the pieces in display, try their hand at rug hooking, and create decorative boxes to hold their own collections. Capacity: 24 people. Ages: 6-12.

Tuesday, May 23: Springtime Exploration at Watson Farm, Jamestown, R.I. Join an in-depth exploration of the Watson Farm working landscape. The walkabout includes a visit with Red Devon cattle and newborn calves, the sheep flock with their lambs, and a working dog demonstration with Kep the Border Collie. Participants will investigate the shoreline, swamp, pond, compost pile, and hayfields and spin a wool bracelet to take home. Capacity: 24 people. Ages: 5-12. Please note: This program takes place from 1:00 – 3:30 p.m.

Tuesday, June 27: Mementos: Jewelry of Life and Love from Historic New England, Eustis Estate, Milton, Mass. Be among the first to visit the spectacular Eustis Estate, Historic New England’s newest house museum. Explore the exhibition Mementos: Jewelry of Life and Love from Historic New England to discover jewelry’s unique role as a public display of personal history. Taking inspiration from the pieces in the exhibition, participants will create their own memento to take home. Capacity: 24 people. Ages: 6-12.

Tuesday, July 18: The Camera’s Eye: House and Garden Pictures and Painting, Hamilton House, South Berwick, Maine. Use your camera eye to take in the landscape at Hamilton House as Elise Tyson did in the early 1900s. Be inspired by her photographs of the fields and gardens, and her portraits of family and friends, to pose for the camera inside and outside her home and garden cottage. Participants will take their own photographs and make a book of watercolor paintings in the garden. Capacity: 24 people. Ages: 6-15.

Tuesday, August 15: Architects and Artists at Gropius House, Lincoln, Mass. Through the powerful story of Walter Gropius, his family, and friends, students will discover principles of Modern architecture and the Bauhaus Movement. Gropius House provides an authentic backdrop for a discussion about sustainable housing and efficient design as students become artists and architects when they design and build a small model home. Presented in partnership with the Learning by Design program of the BSA Foundation. Capacity: 24 people. Ages: 6-15.

Please Note: Due to popular demand, Architects and Artists at Gropius House, Lincoln, Mass., will be repeated on Tuesday, September 26.

Tuesday, September 19: By the Sea: Art and Nature in Coolidge Point, Manchester-by-the-Sea, Mass. In 1871, Thomas Jefferson Coolidge Jr., great-grandson of the president, purchased land with magnificent views of the Atlantic Ocean, now known as Coolidge Point. In this program, we will explore the site’s collections and connections to early American history, and all participants will create a landscape painting on canvas. Capacity: 24 people. Ages: 7-12. Please note: Coolidge Point is not yet open to the public. Registered participants will receive detailed directions and parking information closer to the program date. Any parents wishing to paint must pay the full admission fee to cover the cost of materials.

Tuesday, October 17: Bubbles, Bladders, and Buoyancy, Merwin House, Stockbridge, Mass. In this program, offered in partnership between Historic New England and the Housatonic Valley Association, explore how aquatic animals are able to float, dive, and stay submerged in a river environment. Then, work in teams to create a flotation device for an action figure. Capacity: 24 people. Ages: 6-15

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