List of School Programs

M is for Museum (in METC only) Pre-K

Young students explore the alphabet while touring the museum! Search for letters in our exhibits, hear stories and make crafts.

Tale of the Dragon (in METC only) Pre-K

Learn about griffins, gargoyles and other mythological creatures. Hear the legend of St. George & the Dragon and enjoy our Griffin Garden. Role-play the part of the dragon through dramatic movement, hear other dragon stories, and make your own dragon to take home.

Early American Toys & Tales (hands-on) Pre-K-2nd grade

Let’s Play! Experience how Early American children played, discover how early toys were made, and learn how “free time” has changed and stayed the same. Includes playing with replicas of toys from early America and decorating a spinning top.

Simple Machines (hands-on) 1st-4th grade

“Maker’s Day” is every day at METC! Early Americans used timeless innovations to perform daily tasks and chores. Explore the functions of the inclined plane, screw, lever, wedge, wheel & axle, and pulley through hands-on examination of the Museum’s artifacts. In cooperative learning groups, present findings to the class. Decorate a simple machine to take home.

A Child’s Life in Early America (in METC only) Best for 2nd-4th grade

What was it like to be a child living in Early American times? Was it very different from how children live today, or are there similarities? Experience a day in the life of an Early American child and make a toy to take home.

Early American Schoolhouse (hands-on) Best for 2nd-5th grade

Students examine “school supplies” from the Museum’s collection and learn how each artifact tells the story of the students in a one-room schoolhouse. Student participants try quill pen writing and make a traditional “hornbook” to take home.

The Tradesman and Community (hands-on) Best for 3rd-5th grade

Put yourself in the shoes of the community tradesperson. Who did you depend on? What was your role in the community? Learn about the blacksmith, the tinsmith, the cooper and many other tradespeople while taking part in a “Community Web” activity. Become a Tinsmith Apprentice and make a tin-punching craft.

The American Revolution in New Jersey (hands-on) 4th-12th grade

Tracing the lives of various New Jersey residents—Tories, Patriots, iron workers, farmers, housewives, tavern keepers—and enhanced by artifacts from the Museum’s collection of 18th century objects—this program highlights the harsh conditions and changes in lifestyles that people endured during the colonies’ fight for independence. Journal-making & creative writing complete the program.

Decoding the Past (hands-on) 4th-12th grade

What could this object be? What was it used for? What does it tell us about life in earlier times? Examine some of the Museum’s more mysterious artifacts, and have fun trying to figure out what they were. Make a “secret code” journal to take home.

Measuring Tools of Early Trades (hands-on) Best for 5th-8th grade

Why is a “foot” 12 inches? Discover the necessity of measurement and accuracy in measurement. Examine METC’s early measuring tools to learn how uniform standards were established. In cooperative learning groups, present findings to the others and create solutions for actual measuring problems. Make a measuring tool to take home.

Art in Artifacts & Architecture (in METC only) Best for 2nd-12th grade

Early American artisans created their tools and implements primarily for function, but many also exercised their artistic talents in the form and decoration. Buildings were often works of art with different styles of architecture and design. Tour the METC building and neighboring buildings (weather permitting). “Take home” parts of the METC building through creating stencils & rubbings from the building itself.

Creative Journal Writing (in METC only) Best for 3rd-12th grade

Tour the Museum’s exhibits for ideas and writing prompts for fiction, non-fiction & poetry writing. Make a personal writing journal and participate in creative writing.

From March 9, 2018 through September 5, 2018 ONLY!

Are We There Yet? Stories of Travel by Stagecoach and Steam

METC’s newest exhibit features artifacts and personal stories related to traveling in the 19th century.

Contact the Education Department at 973-377-2982 ext. 12 or
to plan a customized program either at METC or at your school.


METC STEAM Offerings


Science Simple Machines – Grades 1-4

Explore the functions of 6 simple machines through hands-on close examination of METC’s artifacts.

Make a simple machine to take home.

Technology Decoding the Past – Grades 4- 12

Through hands-on analysis of Early American artifacts & primary sources, discover early technology that led to today’s inventions.

Following step-by-step instructions, create an intricately folded “code book” to take home.

Engineering  – Art in Artifacts & Architecture – Grades 2-12

Examine the Richardson Romanesque METC building (built 1899-1900), both inside & out.

Determine the differences between form & function, structure & decoration.

“Take home” parts of the building through artistic renderings of stencils & rubbings.

Art – Through a Glass, Brightly, Grades 3-12

Through personal examination of the Museum’s stained glass windows (either on-site or through PowerPoint), learn about these artistic features of the building.

Use the quotes presented on the windows as writing prompts for creative writing.

Make a writing journal to take home.

 Math Measuring Tools of Early Trades – Grades 5 -12

Discover the necessity of measurement & accuracy.

Examine METC’s collection of early measuring tools to learn how uniform standards were established.

Solve measuring problems with a hand-made measuring tool.