As fall begins, we start to think about Thanksgiving, Halloween and northern states (well, at least in Florida we do since we don’t have the beautiful changing of leaves). In many classrooms and at home, looking at the colonial period fits in perfectly with this time of year. As you study the First Thanksgiving, you can use the books on our list today to also look at life in the colonies. Enjoy fall and digging a little deeper into American History with a few of the books we listed below.
Books About Colonial America
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The Dreadful, Smelly Colonies: The Disgusting Details About Life in Colonial America by Elizabeth Raum – The Dreadful, Smelly Colonies takes a look at the ugly side of Colonial history. Readers of all ages will enjoy and be grossed out at the crazy facts of what daily life was like during the Colonial period. This a great book to use during the Thanksgiving season or a unit on the colonies.
If You Lived In Williamsburg in Colonial Days by Barbara Brenner – If You Lived in Williamsburg in Colonial Days is filled with questions kids might ask about this time period. Every few pages a new question is asked, such as; where did people get their clothing? and who did the cooking? Following the question is information that answers the question, along with illustrations that border the page.
Colonial Voices: Hear Them Speak by Kay Winters – In Colonial Voices we meet Ethan, an errand boy making stops throughout Boston. At each stop Ethan learns more about the coming war that will forever change America. This is a great book to show different perspectives and how individuals changed our country.
A Horse’s Tale: A Colonial Williamsburg Adventure by Susan Lubner – A Horse’s Tale is a story of Garrick the Gardener’s horse. When the horse is sad, the people of Williamsburg work together to cheer him up with items they can give or do for the horse. Throughout the book, readers will learn about the people of Williamsburg and what they did.
You Wouldn’t Want to Be an American Colonist! by Jacqueline Morley – You Wouldn’t Want to Be an American Colonist is another book that teaches readers about the other side of life in the colonies. Another great read for units on the colonial period.
Our Colonial Year by Cheryl Harness – Our Colonial Year looks at each of the 13 colonies throughout the year and the jobs people did. From gardening, quilting bees, maple sugaring, and spinning readers will see all the many jobs that were completed in a year’s time. The illustrations are a beautiful paring with the information.
Hornbooks and Inkwells by Verla Kay – Hornbooks and Inkwells introduces readers to a school room in the colonial era. From hornbooks, inkwells, strict teaches and all ages learning in the same room, readers will see how different life was for kids.
Samuel Eaton’s Day: A Day in the Life of a Pilgrim Boy by Kate Waters – Samuel Eaton’s Day is a great book, the photographs add to the story and make the setting come to life. The year is 1627 and Samuel Eaton is helping with his first rye harvest. We learn that even as a child, children were expected to work and contribute to the family. This series also includes the following books that are a great resource to use when studying the colonies.
Sarah Morton’s Day: A Day in the Life of a Pilgrim Girl by Kate Waters
Tapenum’s Day: A Wampanoag Indian Boy In Pilgrim Times by Kate Waters
Thy Friend, Obadiah by Brinton Turkle – Thy Friend, Obadiah tells the story of Obadiah, a colonial boy who finds a friend in a seagull. This is a sweet story that teaches readers to be kind, caring and that friends can come from the more unlikely places. There are several other books about Obadiah including: Obadiah the Bold and Rachel and Obadiah.