Deborah Peterson's Colonial School Programs

327 Sumneytown Pike
Harleysville, PA 19438
Telephone 215-256-9399
E-mail Deborah








All text and images copyright Deborah Peterson 2002-15.

Website design and maintenance:
K L Martz


Deb's age-tailored programs give a living example of how life was conducted in the years of our country before and during the American War for Independence. Through discussion, demonstration and do-it-yourself methods, she shows that our ancestors were intelligent, creative, resourceful, thoughtful persons who in some ways were not so very different from us in today's world. Students learn what children did, how they played, how they contributed to the welfare of their family and home. They have fun learning how to make butter, weave, sew, make gingerbread. They'll learn the true stories of historic figures like Molly Pitcher, the beginnings of holidays like Thanksgiving, and how to card and spin wool in preparation for its being made into fabric.

Her Mother Goose entertains and instructs students with stories and humor accompanied by the antics of Mother's goose and her little mouse friend. They'll join in on a rhyme-along and help Mother Goose remember the words to familiar rhymes. Download the Mother Goose brochure.

Deb has been honored by the patronage of many home-school groups, public schools, child-centered civic and community organizations. Those children's parents' requests for their own programs has been the inspiration for Deb's adult series.

Discussion and experiential programs for students are available for the topics which follow. Suggestions and requests for other topics are always welcomed, and the list grows. Contact Deb with your thoughts and questions.

Lecture and Discussion programs

Clothing the Common Sort: What did our English colonial ancestors actually wear? This show-n-tell program explains the clothing of laboring English colonial people with emphasis on the common sort, children’s, women’s and civilian men’s working clothes in the third quarter of the eighteenth century.

The Common Pin: a PowerPoint program. A careful look at the straight pin, its importance, uses and misconceptions in the eighteenth century. A hand-out is supplied.

Colonial English Foodways in Southeastern Pennsylvania: What did they eat?

The Clothing We Wear, Its Reasons, the Order it goes on, or Why Do I HAVE to wear all this stuff? This program is tailored to your historical organization or site. It explains the ‘why’ of eighteenth-century English colonial clothing so staff and volunteers better understand the clothing of the time and avoid making common mistakes. A hand-out is supplied.

Colonial Pastimes for children: What WAS the day like in the life of an eighteenth-century English child? A show-n-tell presentation that covers the daily life of colonial children. A hand-out is supplied.

The First Thanksgiving - Plimoth, 1621: Myths, Legends and Facts: This PowerPoint presentation goes into the myths, legends and facts of the ‘first’ thanksgiving. A hand-out is supplied.

Hands-on workshops

Butter Making

Weaving on a Tape Loom
Marbled Paper
Plain Sewing for Boys and Girls
Colonial Dyestuffs
The Story of Gingerbread (requires kitchen facilities)
Colonial Christmas Goodies (requires kitchen facilities)

Field trips for hearth cooking classes are also available.