t is for trading post

note: this activity was done during a week long camp
called “way back when…” for 4 & 5 year olds at our local museum.

after we made our purses/pouches and filled them with buttons, we added name tags (essential to figure out who didn’t have one….


things get a little chaotic when there are 19 kids sewing on the floor with the freedom to move on to dress up and wheel rolling when they are done).

pioneer dress up

we read some of the little house on the praire picture book series. there is a page that mentions that pa goes to town to trade his furs for things. we read that on tuesday and on friday worked hard to remember what was happening in that picture.

t is for trading post

then began our imaginary play. there was a bench with a sign (this is when i LOVE that the preschoolers can’t read yet) that we examined. after clues were given and letters were read, it was announced that this is our Trading Post. i explained that there was a woman who had a lot of quill pens, but since she was a wedding dress maker, she didn’t need quill pens, she needed white buttons! eyes lit up. one little girl innocently yelled, “i have some! i have some!” we went on a long journey through the darkened museum on a hunt for the trading post.

trading begins

when we arrived we took turns trading one white button for a quill pen (from the museum store). quite a good deal.

finding a button

making the trade

then there was trying out of the new quill pens (a little different than our quill/paint project) and resting because this was friday towards the end of the morning and some were t.i.r.e.d.

trying the quill pens

this was one of my very favorite moments of the week. wonderful fun.

6 thoughts on “t is for trading post

  1. I am absolutely in love with your ideas. All of them— I can’t wait to go visit everyone single one of your LETTER archives. THANK you posting all this fabulousness.

    This trading post is BRILLIANT!

    I would give my right pinky to have my kids attend your preschool. :):)


  2. This is such a wonderful camp with such great ideas. You said you were doing this in a local museum? I think it’s great they offer something like this.



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