Virtual School Programs

Historic New England offers a wide range of school programs for students age pre-K through high school. We work closely with our local communities in shaping these programs and are excited to now share them virtually.

Each program includes live instruction via Zoom or Google Meet with a member of our professional education staff. Programs cost $50 per 45-minute session and may be able to be modified to meet your classroom’s needs.

Please contact the email address listed under the program in which you are interested for inquiries and booking. 

Dirt Detectives

Third grade through high school
[email protected]

Students learn what it takes to be an archaeologist as they participate in work at a mock dig site. They will learn how to use primary source documents to identify the best place to dig, how to clear away soil and unearth objects, and what types of materials they are most likely to find. As the program progresses, they will realize that digging is just one part of an archaeologist’s job, and that processing, identifying, and researching the significance of objects to the site are also critically important. Purchase virtual Dirt Detectives here

Includes pre-taped segments.


pierce house drawing in 1765

Colonial Trades: Making Community Work

Third grade
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Students learn what life was like on Pierce Farm in Dorchester, Massachusetts, during the years leading up to the Revolution. Primary source information from Colonel Samuel Pierce’s account book allows students to understand the livelihoods of real Dorchester residents, including farmers, weavers, and blacksmiths and how bartering was the central economic system. Students also match up and compare goods from today with reproduction artifacts from Colonial times and discuss the environmental impacts of our reliance on plastics.

Quincy Revolution: A Family Divided

Fifth grade
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In 1770 Colonel Josiah Quincy I built the current Quincy House on his 250-acre country estate. Colonel Quincy and his son Josiah were devoted patriots, but his son Samuel was a loyalist. Both brothers were involved with the Boston Massacre Trial, where Josiah Jr. defended the British soldiers while Samuel prosecuted them. The American Revolution divided the family forever. This virtual program has three session options. In Session 1 students are introduced to Josiah Quincy 1, Josiah Quincy II, and Samuel Quincy and take a virtual house tour of the Quincy House museum. In Session 2 students will build a time-line of events leading up to the Boston Massacre, filling in the Quincy family’s involvement during the Revolutionary War. In Session 3 students will compare the beliefs of the two Quincy brothers before analyzing Paul Revere’s engraving of the Boston Massacre and then compare it to images from the loyalist and neutral perspectives.

Woman in colonial garb

Living in New England’s Colonies

Third through ninth grade
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Using primary sources and critical thinking skills, students are guided through an in-depth exploration of New England’s colonies through the diverse lives and stories of the men, women, and children of the period. This program includes up to six modules covering many aspects of daily life, from clothing and food preparation to medicines and family life.

Includes pre-taped segments.

Three decorated cups

Amongst Friends: Sarah Orne Jewett and Her World

Third through eighth grade
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As an influential nineteenth-century author, Sarah Orne Jewett created detailed settings, many of which were in her home of South Berwick, Maine. In this program, students explore the creative side of the past through her life, work, and wide circle of artist friends. Like Jewett and her friends, students take inspiration from their surroundings, both natural and built, to create their own works of art.

Includes pre-taped segments.

Dominique chickens.

Project CHICK

Pre-K through high school
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This virtual version of Historic New England’s most in-demand school program is conducted in two parts. Each part includes a mix of pre-taped segments and live instruction. Throughout the program, students learn about the life cycle of a chicken, the endangered Dominique breed, and the importance of sustainable agriculture.

Includes pre-taped segments.


A virtual storybook and craft programs based on a variety of historical topics for students in preschool through grade two can be found here: History for Early Learners

Also, Historic New England has a library of StoryWalk® programs available for rental. A StoryWalk® is a fun, educational activity that features a children’s book, taken apart with the pages laminated, set up outside along a set walking path. StoryWalks® are perfect for socially distanced, outdoor classroom time. Titles available include Little Apple Goat, Face the Wind, The Fierce Yellow Pumpkin, and more. More information can be found here: StoryWalk.

Check out our other school programs here.