Colonial Quest Curriculum

Bring history to life for your students with this free, standards-based curriculum that examines early settlement history through the lens of your hometown. This short-focused research project fits into the Social Studies curriculum as part of state and local history or as an opening to a study of Native Americans or Early Settlement. Grades 5-8

The sequence of the Colonial Quest Curriculum is driven by questions:

  • WHO were the first residents here?
  • WHERE did the colonists come from?
  • WHEN and WHY did they come?
  • WHAT did the colonists do to establish this town?

The curriculum’s approach integrates place-based education, primary source exploration, and service learning: students use maps and town charters to track movement and settlement; they find early settlers in old burial grounds; learn more about specific people using proprietor’s records, the census and town histories; and share their learning via a Quest (educational treasure hunt).

Review Individual Lessons Here

1. Abenaki Homeland

Who lived here first, prior to colonization?

Lesson Plan | Rubric | Handout

Complete Lesson Package

2. Old England to New England

When and why did colonists leave England for New England? Where did they settle?

Lesson Plan | Rubric | Handouts

Complete Lesson Package

3. Settling VT and NH

When and how was this region settled?

Lesson Plan | Rubric | Handout

Complete Lesson Package

4. First Settlers

Who were the first people to settle here?

Lesson Plan | Rubric | Handout

Complete Lesson Package

5. Research

What did these people do to form our town?

Lesson Plan | Rubric

Complete Lesson  Package

6. Writing our Quest

How can we share what we’ve learned with others?

Lesson Plan | Rubric | Handouts

Complete Lesson Package

7. Finishing Touches

What do we need to do to complete our Quest?

Lesson Plan | Rubric

Complete Lesson Package

Take Your Class on a Colonial Quest

Claremont Colonial Quest, Claremont, NH
Center of Town Quest, Hartford, VT
Mill Cemetery Quest, Plainfield NH
Prouty Stories, Hanover NH
Hartland Anniversary Quest, Hartland VT
Valley Quest of White River Junction, White River Junction VT

Other Quest Curriculum

addquest

Adaptable

civilwar

Civil War

watershed

Watershed

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Staff

Sara Cottingham

Valley Quest Coordinator

Valley Quest

 802.291.9100 x 107

Valley Quest

— Sara Cottingham, Valley Quest Coordinator

Sara holds a BA in Geography and an MS in Community & Regional Planning, both from the University of Texas at Austin. A watershed planner by trade, Sara’s inner compass is guided by a passion for rural and mountainous places. After brief stints working for state and federal agencies, Sara spent the last four years cleaning up rivers in West Virginia. Her favorite pastimes include looking at maps, making art, exploring woods and rivers, and playing old-time fiddle and banjo for contra dances. Sara also maintains a private practice as an independent grant writer for nonprofits.