Originally built around 1738, Raynham Hall was home to the Townsend family – including “Culper Jr.” – George Washington’s spy. The house is furnished to both the Colonial and Victorian eras, and has the notoriety as one of the most haunted buildings on Long Island. Raynham Hall Museum, like many historic sites, connects well with 4th grade local history curriculum. For a typical fourth grade tour, if the weather cooperates, the students start outside to hear about the differences between the architecture of the Colonial and Victorian eras evident in the house. Then, the kids are given a tour of the house, get to handle Colonial objects from a teaching collection, and see a demonstration of invisible ink.
The tour incorporates different types of activities, but what do the fourth graders really think about it? To prepare for the workshop we decided to ask some students who had recently visited. And even crazier, we wanted to ask them to be museum anarchists too.