Who Were the Founding Fathers? Activity

2.8 based on 11 ratings
Updated on Jun 19, 2013

Do historical figures seem as dusty and boring as a textbook? Bring historical figures alive with this fun family activity! Your child will plan a Founding Fathers Feast by researching historical figures and assigning each character to a dinner guest. When the big night rolls around, your child will get to meet Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, Ben Franklin, and more, all at her own dinner table!

What You Need:

  • Family members and friends
  • American History textbook and other research materials
  • Paper
  • Pen

What You Do:

  1. Research the founding fathers and other main players in the American Revolution, but don’t just go for the cold facts. If your friends and family are going to be acting out these characters, you want to bring out their interesting sides! What was Jefferson’s favorite snack? What was John Adams’ personality like? And what would Ben Franklin talk about over dinner? Find out as many details as possible, from what they wore to what they liked to eat. When you've gathered your research, make a fact sheet about each character, and give one to each of the dinner party invitees.
  2. Plan the menu! You don't have to go all out 18th century style, but try throwing in some meat and potatoes, or other foods that you encountered in your research. It will help to get everyone in the mood!
  3. When the big night rolls around, you don't have to be in costume, but you do have to be in character! Each guest should come prepared to act, talk, and eat like the historical figure they were assigned. This should be fun, funny, and maybe a little embarrassing, but it's worth it! For extra credit, use a famous quote from your character at the dinner table.

Helping your child get inside the minds of the historical figures they are studying will help students grasp a picture of history through the actions of its most important figures. Plus, it's loads of fun!

Liza Jenkins is a middle school Language Arts teacher and private tutor from Maryland. She enjoys spending time with her husband and two children.