The Shields-Ethridge Heritage Farm is an historic site, reminding us of farmers who depended on local production and lived in a self-sufficient way. A visit to the Shields-Ethridge Heritage Farm offers third grade students demonstrations of living, learning, and working over a 200 year history.
Suggestions for preparing students for observing, recording, and discussing their visit to the Shields-Ethridge Farm are organized by specific demonstration sites. The materials provided on this website can be printed or copied as needed by teachers. Each of the lesson plans meets applicable performance standards of the Georgia Department of Education for the third grade.
To introduce third graders to the Shields-Ethridge Heritage Farm, use the attached map, drawn by Al McLeod of the Jefferson City Schools. Each of the 20 buildings or spaces shown on the map had a specific function. Students will see each of these places and will learn why each was needed. Before visiting, students might study the map and imagine the demonstrations they will see:
- Living on a farm 100 years ago—candle dipping, spinning, drawing water from
a well, black pot cooking at the Teacher’s house
Going to school 100 years ago—recitations, play, chores at the Bachelors’
Cotton farming 100 years ago—ploughing, planting, ginning cotton by hand and
at the gin
Processing grain 100 years ago—wheat harvesting hand tools and grist mill at the
Making tools 100 years ago—Blacksmithing and woodworking at the blacksmith shop and planing mill
Students might also study the map and identify the commercial center of the farm, where goods and services were provided. The store, or Commissary, was the only source of “bought” goods for many miles around in Jackson County. Cotton was the major crop grown at the Shields-Ethridge Farm. Students could discuss why the buildings are located where they are, and why a water tower stands near the warehouse.
Knowing what they will see on a day’s visit to the farm should help students explore this piedmont farmstead. Suggestions linked to demonstrations are included in an effort to help students acquire an understanding of Georgia’s agricultural and economic history.