Colonial Times Come to JFK

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Representatives from the historic Smithtown Tavern recently paid a visit to JFK, a culmination to the school’s unit on colonial studies. Dressed in period clothing, the Tavern staff spoke about Long Island during the colonial time period and discussed what life was like for residents of the day.

Displaying documents, photos and signs to enhance the students’ experience, the representatives asked students to share what they knew about specific experiences from the unit. The students then participated in activities that reflected particular colonial crafts or games. Children dipped their own candles and made their own “pinch pot” to hold the candles. They used quill pens to write letters, dipping to refill the quills with ink before sealing the letters with wax and stamping them. At another activity center, student cleaned wool which was then spun into threads, which many students wore as bracelets. Finally, the students participated in some of the everyday games that children during colonial times would have enjoyed, such as Jacob’s ladder, ball and cup, checkers with corn husks, and dominoes. 

“The students were amazed at how much fun these games were, even though they weren’t video games,” said teacher Jen Arella.. “It was nice to see students gain and share knowledge about colonial times and try out life as a colonist for a day.”