Parents' Guide

Making the Most of Your Trip to Plimoth Plantation

A Guide for Parents

Visitors can pet the baby lambs in Plimoth Plantation's Rare Breeds animal program

ASKING QUESTIONS IS THE BEST WAY TO HAVE A GREAT TIME!

We know that for some people, asking questions in our historical sites can sometimes feel a little intimdating. We understand that you might be feeling shy or awkward about asking questions. Our interpreters will do their best to talk to you first, but we encourage you to jump in and begin a conversation. Our interpreters are expecting you to talk with them about all the things you're interested in. Here are some helpful tips for asking questions at the different sites:

In the 17th-Century English Village, the people you will meet are living in the year 1627. They don't know anything beyond that year. (You may ask modern questions at other places in the Museum.)

Sample Questions:

"What ship did you arrive on?"
"How do you get your food?"
"What sort of work does an 8 year old girl do?"
"Why did you want to leave England?"
"Do English children go to school?"

On Mayflower II you will meet role players from the year 1620 as well as modern-day crewmembers. It is always March 24, 1620 for the role players onboard the ship and they don't know about events beyond that date.

At the Wampanoag Homesite you will be meeting modern-day Native People, some are Wampanoag, some are from other Native Nations. At this site the people you will meet are not back in the past, but they will be dressed in traditional deerskin clothing. 

Sample Questions:

"How long have the Wampanoag People been living here?"
"Who was Hobbamock?"
"What does 'Wampanoag' mean?"
"What Native Nation are you from?"
"What did Wampanoag children do for fun?"
"Did Wampanoag children go to school in the 1600s?"

OTHER FUN THINGS TO DO
The following are some additional fun ways to focus your children during their visit to the outdoor sites of the museum.

Imagine if...
Have the children imagine what it would be like to live in the 17th-Century English Village, on board Mayflower II or at the Wampanoag Homesite. Where would their food come from? What about their clothing? What might they do for work and for play?

A Roof Over Your Head
When you first enter the Wampanoag Homesite and the 17th-Century English Village, pause to look at the way the houses are made. Have your children note the differences in the 17th century houses from your own home or neighborhood. Find out from what materials these houses are made. Ask what tools were used to build these houses.

What's that Used For?
Have children look for objects the English or Wampanoag used in their daily lives. Try to find out what these objects were used for and how they were made. Then compare them to objects we use for the same purpose today. If you have paper and pencil, they can make a sketch of an object.

Smell that Smell
Take a moment to have your children close their eyes and identify the many smells and sounds they are encountering. Do this periodically as you travel through the museum sites. How do the sounds and smells change at different places in the museum? Do you have those smells/sounds at home? Why or why not?

Learn to Make Some Really Old Food!
At the Wampanoag Homesite, the 17th-Century English Village or Mayflower II, have your children find out how to make a common food item that people ate in the 17th century. Write down the ingredients and how it was made. How would you make it at home? Do you eat anything like it already?

OTHER IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR PARENTS

No Costumes, please
We ask that our guests do not wear "Pilgrim" or "Indian" costumes while visiting the Museum. In the Wampanoag Homesite, the staff are Native People who wear traditional Wampanoag clothing authentic to the 17th century and meaningful to their culture. In our Colonial sites we have costumed role players on staff. Guests in costume cause confusion for people who may not be able to distinguish costumed guests from the Museum staff. Therefore, we kindly ask everyone not to wear historical costume when visiting us. Thank you!

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Plimoth Plantation is a not-for-profit 501 (c)3 organization, supported by admissions, grants, members, volunteers, and generous contributors.