Ph: 08 8584 7194

Learning about the olden days - washing clothes
Learning about the olden days

"A day at The Village was a wonderful excursion for my class, adding context to our history studies. Dressing up in the 'OIden Days' style and participating in typical pioneer activities engaged the students, immersing them in the experience of stepping back in time - they loved it!"

- Claire Western, Barmera Primary School.

Learning about the olden days - cooking

Tools for teachers

The Village Education Program provides students with the opportunity to discover what life was like in our region between the1890s and 1950s.

At The Village we aim to encourage teachers to use the museum as a resource to address curriculum learning outcomes, and activities have been matched to the Australian Curriculum (v4.1) for year levels 1-7.

Our guided 2 hour program of activities includes a school assembly 1900s style, and Village staff demonstrating damper, butter and rope making along with ‘doing the laundry’. Allow at least 15 minutes for each activity, with some exploring time as well.

Guided Activities Outline


The whole class meets by the flag-pole in front of the School for ‘Assembly’, followed by a 15 minute introduction from the Village Education Officer. (Depending on class size, this can take place inside the old school building.)

Students will divide into groups of approximately 12, and depart to their activity locations. Each activity lasts 15 minutes, at the end of which the groups are to then move onto their next activity. There will be a Village staff member or volunteer to explain activities and instruct students. Visiting adult group leaders will need to refer to the programme notes and the information at the activity site to help guide the students.

Butter Making

Groups will make enough butter for everyone to sample on the damper. A butter churn is provided as a visual display only. A Village staff member will provide the demonstration.

Damper Making

A Village staff member will instruct students on how to make their own individual dampers.

They will then be cooked the old fashioned way in the campfire by the Settler’s Hut. This is a good opportunity to compare the life-style and cooking facilities of early settlers with our current labour-saving devices.

Washing Day

Students will be made aware that electricity has not always been available at the flick of a switch. Even as late as 1970, some people still used wood stoves for cooking and heating water. Alternative energy sources such as fire power and people power will then be discussed. Household tasks such as cooking, cleaning, washing-up will also be discussed and compared with the use of electrical appliances that complete the tasks today. Students can then experience washing the clothes (provided) using the washboard, tub and wringer.

Rope Making

The group will be divided into two smaller groups, one at each end of the ‘hand-turned’ rope-making machine, with the Village volunteer in the middle guiding the ‘Y’. Students take turns winding the machine.

Once each small group has spent 15 minutes at each activity, re-group at the Entrance Building to taste the damper and butter you have made. This completes the guided activities.

Program Guides

download.pngTeacher's Guide



download.pngUnguided Activities

In addition to the activities listed there are numerous activities and worksheets which align with the Village’s exhibits and themes.

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Education Program details


Approximately 1-2 hours of managed activities, dependent on group size. Activity worksheets for around 3 hours of unguided activities are available.

2024 Fees:
$8.00 per student (no GST).
Teachers and support staff free.
Accompanying parents, carers and grandparents: $5.00 per person (no GST).

Available week days, subject to availability. 




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Allen Hosking Drive - Loxton SA 5333
Email: The Loxton Historical Village

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