Handy House 3rd Grade Programming

Chapter 1 – History Close to Home

This chapter focuses on defining what history is, how it is collected and presented, and the role museums and historical societies have as caretakers of our history. We have chosen the Cadman-White-Handy House as our local site visit for this chapter.

Field trip information for parents

Field trip information for teachers

Background for Teachers: At the Cadman-White-Handy House students will step back in time to colonial period Westport, circa 1730. They will see how the Cadman-White family may have lived when Westport was still part of nearby Dartmouth. At this time, the area was considered a frontier. It saw its first settlers in 1670, but much of the town was destroyed by fire during King Philip’s War in 1675-76. It was still sparsely populated in the early decades of the 18th century. By 1730, farms established in Westport were being run by first- and second-generation colonists, many of whom were descended from people who came to the area on the ship Mayflower. Some of your students may recognize their own family names as they work through these lessons.

During your visit to the Cadman-White-Handy House we will focus on the circa 1713 First Period (Colonial) structure, which is the eastern third of the house that exists today. It had a simple floorplan, consisting of one or two large multipurpose rooms on two floors, a stone cellar, and, an attic.

Your students will experience a rich educational environment as they learn about the history and architecture of the building, colonial construction methods, hand tools of the era, farming tools and practices, and the chores of daily life, as Westporters worked to keep their families safe and their farms running smoothly. The students will participate in hands-on activities and games that will make 1730 Westport come to life..

We have chosen to focus on the years around 1730 because the house, family, and farm were fairly well established by this time. The family was complete; Elizabeth Cadman White and William White were parents to 11 children. And even though Westport was still quite rural and agrarian in character, the city of Boston was on its way to becoming a bustling urban center. Religious differences drove Bostonians to seek less populated areas of the colony, including Westport. In addition, in 1730 the French and Indian War was still about 25 years in the future, and the Revolutionary War would not begin for almost 50 years. While Westport was part of a fairly new British colony, it was significantly affected by the issues that lead to those conflicts.

Handy House Programming for 3rd grade

Chapter 1

Chapter 7

  • Pre-Lesson: