Westward from Vermont

Final Westward from Vermont


Have you ever wondered why Vermonters went westward?  What routes did they take, or what did it cost to get there?  The new Westward from Vermont learning kit from the Henry Sheldon Museum will answer these questions and many more.

Our teachers’ manual summarizes Lewis D. Stillwell’s book, Migration from Vermont.  This very informative work covers topics that include population figures, agricultural practices, economic trends, epidemics, social and religious influences, wars, age-groups, and manufacturing trends from the early settlement of Vermont through the American Civil War.  The book also tells us how many Vermonters emigrated from the state and why.  The thirteen page summary of Stillwell’s work provides the background needed to really discuss what made Vermonters leave hearth and home for the unknowns of the mid-western territories.
One of the great activities included in the kit is the Sheldon’s very own Westward from Vermont board game.  Students playing the game will travel west on an actual route that Vermonters took from Vergennes, Vermont to Edwardsville, and Gaylesburg, Ill.  Activity cards used  during the game provide the opportunity for group discussions and decisions about the trip.  The colorful map presents an artists rendition of the northeastern section of the United States that is both attractive and fun to use in the classroom.
  • Westward Expansion – Allison Lassieur
  • A Woman’s Story of Pioneer Illinois – Tillson and Quaife
  • A Day in June – Deborah Roberts Kirk
  • A Gathering of Days – Joan W. Blos
  • Daily Life in a Covered Wagon – Paul Erickson
  • In the Barn – Bobbie Kalman
  • Duties of Children – J. H. Butler
  • 19th Century Clothing – Bobbie Kalman
  • Tools and Gadgets – Bobbie Kalman
  • Pioneer Days – David C. King
  • Pioneer Life from A to Z – Bobbie Kalman
  • The Pioneers – Marie and Douglas Gorsline
  • Visiting a Village – Bobbie Kalman
  • Johnny Appleseed – Steven Kellogg
  • Early Farm Life – Lise Gunby
  • If You Traveled West in a Covered Wagon – Ellen Levine
  • Westward Expansion – Teresa Domnauer
  • Frontier Living – Edwin Tunis
  • Log Cabin in the Woods – Joanne Landers Henry
  • Pioneer Girl: The Story of Laura Ingalls Wilder – William Anderson
  • Pioneer Girl: A True Story of Growing Up on the Prairie – Andrea Warren
  • The Illinois Pioneer Period – Genean Stec
  • The Olden Days – Joe Mathieu
The kit also includes twenty-three books with a wide variety of content and reading levels. From picture books to biographies, diaries to participatory stories, there is a book for every reader in your group.
Three music CDs allow your class to experience some of the popular music of the day. The Pa’s Fiddle project makes this possible by featuring the songs that Pa Ingalls, of the famed “Little House” books, played for his family.
  • Pa’s Fiddle – Charles Ingalls
  • Happy Land: Musical Tributes to Laura Ingalls Wilder
  • The Arkansas Traveler: Music from Little House on the Prairie
Other activities based on lists of artifacts from the Sheldon Museum present decision-making opportunities, math activities and graphing, spacial relationships activities,options for prioritizing, and new vocabulary words.  A featured letter from the Sheldon’s Tudor collection contains the answers questions to a crossword puzzle! This kit is versatile and a perfect complement to your Common Core Curriculum. Your class will have fun while learning the history of migration from the Northeast!