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Colonial Farm Life

Explore the domestic, agricultural, and cultural heritage of Colonial America with hands-on workshops!

Though the years just prior to the American Revolution were certainly full of turmoil, the people of the colonies worked hard and found time for a some fun, too! This tour explores the domestic side of 18th century America and puts students in the shoes of their colonist counterparts in a fun, interactive way. Look on the Itinerary page for an idea of the workshops you might try during your two-hour tour.

Itinerary

Quill and Ink
In the 18th century, beautiful handwriting was not only praised but expected. Practice some maxims of the day in long-hand, and work on your very own “John Hancock.”
Candle Dipping
Make your own taper-candle to take home with you, learn about the types of waxes used, and be entertained by lore from a time before light-switches.
Butter Making
Churn some sweet cream butter in our Summer Kitchen, learn how our dairy cows are milked and cared for, and gain firsthand knowledge of how to make your own butter at home.

Etiquette
As a young man of not yet sixteen years of age, George Washington copied a set of proper 18th century social behavior. Learn proper manners and be tested on your knowledge.
Weaving
Wool and Flax are the main fibers used to make our clothing. Try your hand at carding wool and using a hand loom.

Games
When chores were finished, the colonists had entertainment such as the Game of Graces, Trap-Ball, and Hoop and Stick, so take a break and try your hand.

Tour content may vary.

FAQ

When should we arrive?

At least 15 minutes prior to the start of your tour.

What is the minimum/maximum group size?

Like most of our programs, we need a minimum of 50 people to schedule a tour. Once that is met any size group can add on up to our maximum of 560 people.

Can we buy food?

There is on site food at the Bakery and Restaurant which can be ordered or purchased throughout the day.

Can we bring our own lunch?

Most schools bring lunches for the students, and you will have access to a picnicking area for lunch.

How do we get there?

See Map for driving directions.

What is the typical age group for this tour?

This tour is great for all ages, but is most appropriate for pre-K through 4th grade.

Do I need to teach my students anything specific before our field trip?          This program focuses mainly upon interactive activities and is comparatively lighter on historical fact than most of our other tours, so just be prepared to come enjoy your time here! Do I need to group my students a certain way before our field trip?          Like our Revolutionary War program, we place our guests into “townships” of roughly 35, including adults. It is not at all necessary to do so ahead of time, but will save a few minutes upon your arrival, if you wish to do so. All of our tour leads are prepared to greet and assist you when you arrive. They will provide you with all necessary paperwork and directions, and assist your students with lining up into straight lines behind the township flag for your group(s). Do I need reservations?

Large groups need reservations, but individuals may join a tour in progress for $11.50 if space is available.

Testimonials

My compliments on the superb “American Revolution School Tour” that John Muir Middle School experienced on Wednesday. You, Sgt. Major Harmon, Master Villareal, Master Drazin, and Miss Shaddix all played your roles brilliantly. I’ve been teaching American History for over thirty years, and have visited Williamsburg, Jamestown, Plymouth, Sturbridge, Mystic Seaport and other “living history” sites as a tourist, so I feel qualified to give you an enthusiastic “thumbs up” on the quality and quantity of information that was entertainingly presented at each of the rotation sites. You certainly make effective use of the three-and-a-half hours! –Glen Burbank, California
  Thank you for a wonderful field trip yesterday! Since I am New England born and bred, I wondered how you could live up to my Revolutionary War expectations. Well I must say you surpassed them! Thank you from the entire 5th grade class at the Academy of Academic Excellence! We had a great time! All of you did a bang up job and we plan on returning next year. Thanks again! –Donna Academy for Academic Excellence



  Our 8th graders had a superb field trip to your Revolutionary War session in December.  I was truly impressed with the professionalism, dedication, authenticity and true-life experiences the students enjoyed.  (I was a docent for Massachusetts historical sites, as well as for the Ventura County Historical Society.) –Judith Nelson Riverside, California
It goes a long way when you show a child a book with information about the history of the world they live in. When you give that same child the opportunity to see it first hand, hear, and feel the sounds of the past now you have given that child a lesson that will last a life-time. God Bless You! –Paul Francis Oceanside, California
I would just like to thank you immensely for the wonderful adventure you and your staff took my students on yesterday.  They came to school today with a true love of the country and a renewed love of history.  They read a story in class today called, “…If You Lived at the Time of the American Revolution” and as soon as the story was over, the talk about yesterday began.  They loved every minute of their time there…Thank you once again for all of your hard work in bring this period of history to life for my students.

Lisa Digrado Linda Vista Elementary Pasadena, California


My class chaperones and I really enjoyed your reenactment of the Revolutionary War.  All Day long I heard comments such as:  “wow, this is fun,” “I’m learning something new,” “I never knew that,” “Now I understand…” Our trip was excellent and I know my students learned more than what I had been teaching from our textbook.  Thank you for making history come alive for my students and me.” –Rhonda Arroyo Verde School
“I was at the farm on Friday March 22nd with my daughter’s school.  I’ve been a mom for 22½ years and have been doing field trips for over 17 years, and yours is by far the best one EVER!!!  And it’s not just because our last name is Riley.  Everyone was so nice, knowledgeable, polite, professional and in  character most of the time.  I seriously loved it and will be back with my husband and the rest of the family.  Thanks for everything.”   –Debi Riley Bellflower, California
“My class just had its field trip today and it was fantastic! All of the kids thoroughly enjoyed it and really experienced the Colonial Life we have been studying. Thank you so much for this wonderful experience. This was one social studies lesson that even my most fidgety pupils did not consider “boring” even for a moment!  Well done!”   — Carmella Danella Santa Ana, California
“We are looking forward to visiting your farm again. It is our school’s favorite fieldtrip. After two years, we have students asking when we are going and signing up early!” – Shannon Cabanas, Cobalt Middle School Victorville, CA
“To all the folks at Riley Farm–Thanks for all the great work you do!   All the best,”            –Walter Fay, Executive Producer “The Patriot”
“We just attended with our Charter school, Gorman learning center. My 13 year old Stephen, and 7 year old Jessica really enjoyed the interactive/reinactment of the Revolutionary War. But to tell you the truth,I think I enjoyed it just as much. I only wish I could have brought the other sons, age 15..Mark, and 17…Luke. They would have loved it also. So, we will attend future engagements if possible. Thank you so much again. We had a WONDERFUL time!!!”  –Diana Spink, Panorma City
“A touch of Colonial America on the West Coast.   The Rileys have done their research!   The authenticity of food, clothing, sharing of colonial trades, shelter and surrounding environment is truly remarkable.   Participating in a battle … was a definite highlight…”

Pam Combs, 5th Grade Teacher

      Bryant Ranch Elementary School, Yorba Linda

“A visit to Colonial Chesterfield…is the perfect way to start our year.   As we study the Revolutionary Period and pioneer days…I often see students’ faces light up as they recall adventures (“we shot at the British from behind that stone wall”) and other lessons learned “out at the farm.”   You make history “come alive” …thanks!
         Ted Campbell, 5th grade teacher
         Pachappa School, Riverside 

“Thank you for the most wonderful field trip I have ever hosted for children. Your knowledge of history, the authenticity of your facilities, the beauty of the surroundings, and the love of history that you shared with the students are very much appreciated.   All 112 students and teachers from Discovery Elementary School thank you! We are already planning our next visit.  We never thought it would be possible to take the children back in time, but you have done just that! What a priceless opportunity.  Thank you again for the experience.” Mary Dougherty Fifth Grade Teacher, Discovery Elementary
I just wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed my visit to your farm yesterday with my daughter’s Girl Scout troop.  It was a wonderful, peaceful day, as well as educational.  Smelling the clean air, hearing the birds chirping, seeing the lovely countryside and feeling the warm sunshine was so relaxing.  And watching your beautiful children playing in the tall grass was enchanting.  I felt like a guest at your home rather than a visitor at a tourist location.  And by the way, the apple pie was one of the best I’ve ever had! Thanks for the great day! Sincerely, Nancy San Fernando

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Individual or Family Ticket Purchase
Individuals may join a tour in progress for $11.50 per person;  See Map for driving directions).

Please confirm date & time of trip on the Riley’s Farm Web Calendar, or call 909-790-TIME

(Your Reservation Must Match an Existing Time & Date; tour price does not include a caramel apple.)

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