Welcome to Notebooking Across the USA, a series of unit studies covering each state in the U.S. in order of admission to the union. You can find the landing page for this series with links to each states unit study as they are published, along with tips, suggestions, and recommended resources for this series here: Notebooking Across the USA. These unit studies are written with homeschool students grades 3-8 in mind.
The most recommended resource for this series is the USA States Pack, and while I believe it will be very helpful if you will be studying all of the states, it is not required. If you do wish to purchase the pack, use the code benandmeUSA for a 25% discount.
New Hampshire Unit Study
New Hampshire became the 9th state to join the union on June 21. 1788, however, of the thirteen original colonies, it was the first one to declare its independence from Mother England — a full six months before the Declaration of Independence was signed. Captain John Mason named New Hampshire after the town of Hampshire, England.
New Hampshire is a located in the New England region of the northeastern United States. It is bordered by Massachusetts to the south, Vermont to the west, Maine and the Atlantic Ocean to the east, and the Canadian province of Quebec to the north. New Hampshire is the 5th smallest by land area and the 9th least populous of the 50 United States.
New Hampshire has a changeable climate, with wide variations in daily and seasonal temperatures. The variations are affected by proximity to the ocean, mountains, lakes or rivers. The state enjoys all four seasons. Summers are short and cool; winters are long and cold; fall is glorious with foliage. The weather station on Mount Washington has recorded some of the coldest temperatures and strongest winds in the continental United States.
Nickname: Granite State
Motto: Live Free or Die
Agriculture: nursery stock, poultry and eggs, fruits and nuts, vegetables
Industry: machinery, electronics, metal products
Mining: gold, granite
Have your students color and label an outline map of New Hampshire. Include the state capital, Concord, largest city of Manchester,and the city of Dover. Also include the White Mountains (Mount Washington), the Merrimack River, the Connecticut River, and Seavey’s Island.
New Hampshire did not officially adopt a state flag until 1909. Prior to that, New Hampshire had numerous regimental flags to represent the state. The present flag has only been changed once, in 1931 when the state’s seal was modified.
In the center is a broadside view of the frigate “Raleigh”, in the left foreground is a granite boulder, and in the background a rising sun. A laurel wreath and the words Seal of the State of New Hampshire surrounds the whole.
New Hampshire State Bird: Purple Finch
New Hampshire State Flower: Purple Lilac
New Hampshire State Tree: White Birch
“Old New Hampshire” is the original and official state song of New Hampshire. The words were written by Dr. John F. Holmes, and the music was composed by Maurice Hoffmann in 1926.
Learn about New Hampshire‘s state government here: Government
Flora and Fauna
The most common trees in northern New Hampshire include Red Spruce and Balsam Fir, while the Red Maple, Beech, Yellow Birch, White Pine, Red Oak, Hemlock, and White Ash are the most common tree species in the southern parts of the state.
New Hampshire History
Various Algonquian (Abenaki and Pennacook) tribes inhabited the area before European settlement. English and French explorers visited New Hampshire in 1600–1605, and English fishermen settled at Odiorne’s Point in present-day Rye in 1623.
In 1629, John Mason received a land grant and named the new settlement New Hampshire. The first permanent settlement was at Hilton’s Point (present-day Dover). By 1631, the Upper Plantation comprised modern-day Dover, Durham and Stratham; in 1679, it became the “Royal Province”.
The first potato planted in the United States was at Londonderry Common Field in 1719.
Levi Hutchins of Concord invented the first alarm clock in 1787.
On June 20, 1788, New Hampshire became the first state to hold a constitutional convention.
In 1833 the first free public library in the United States was established in Peterborough.
In 1853, Hillsboro native, Franklin Pierce, became the 14th U. S. President
Luther C. Ladd of Alexandria, New Hampshire is believed to be the first soldier killed during the Civil War. He died during the Baltimore riot of 1861, and was just 17 at the time.
New Hampshire is the only state that ever played host at the formal conclusion of a foreign war. In 1905, Portsmouth was the scene of the treaty ending the Russo-Japanese War.
The highest wind speed recorded at ground level was at Mt. Washington, on April 12, 1934. The winds were three times as fast as those in most hurricanes.
On May 5, 1961, Alan Shepard became the first American in space when he manned a Mercury spacecraft he named Mercury 7. There was just enough room for one person.
On January 28, 1986, Space shuttle, Challenger, exploded, killing everyone on board, including New Hampshire school teacher, Christa McAuliffe.
Famous People from New Hampshire
Alan Shepard (astronaut and first American in space)
Christa McAuliffe (teacher, chosen to be the first teacher in space but was killed in the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster)
Franklin Pierce (14th President of the United States)
Daniel Webster (politician and statesman)
Sarah Josepha Hale (writer of “Mary Had a Little Lamb and the “godmother of Thanksgiving”)
Robert Frost (poet)
Other Uses for Notebooking Pages
dictation and copywork
draw and write
vocabulary and spelling words
recording reading lists
plant and animal classification
Road Trip New Hampshire
If you have a chance to visit the state of New Hampshire, be sure you don’t miss these sites. If you won’t be visiting, take a virtual field trip by clicking on the name of the site. Have your student create Travel Journal notebooking pages to record what they learn.
Ride the world’s first mountain climbing train, the only cog railway east of the Rockies,
to the top of Mount Washington – the highest peak in New England!
Strawbery Banke is an authentic 10-acre outdoor history museum dedicated to bringing 300+ years of American history in the same waterfront neighborhood to life. The Museum is a place for children, adults, multigenerational families and groups to gather to explore eight heritage gardens, 32 historic buildings and traditional crafts, preservation programs, hands-on activities, the stories told by costumed role-players and the changing exhibits that offer hours of fun and discovery. The Museum’s restored buildings and open space invite visitors to immerse themselves in the past, using objects from the museum’s collection of 30,000 artifacts, and the histories of the families who lived and worked in the Puddle Dock neighborhood to engage, educate and entertain.
As it winds its way along the harbor and waterfront through busy Market Square and into streets of sedate old homes, the Portsmouth Harbor Trail connects more than 70 of the city’s historical sites and scenic attractions. Among these are 10 buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Buildings, 10 National Historic Landmarks, and a number of historic homes that are open to visitors. Among them are:
The USS Albacore was a research submarine, designed by the Navy to test experimental features used in modern submarines. Today Albacore has been preserved and opened to the public.
The Robert Frost Farm was home to Robert Frost and his family from 1900-1911. Frost, one of the nation’s most acclaimed poets whose writings are said to be the epitome of New England, attributed many of his poems to memories from the Derry years. The simple two-story white clapboard farmhouse is typical of New England in the 1880s.
Until a decade after the end of the Civil War, stagecoaches were the preferred method of transportation to the North Conway area. The rail line from Conway to North Conway was completed from Conway on June 3, 1872, during the administration of President Ulysses S. Grant and extended to Intervale in October 1874. That same year, the Portsmouth, Great Falls and Conway Railroad built the North Conway station. Enjoy an old-fashioned railroad experience on vintage trains, departing from this 1874 Victorian station.
The McAuliffe-Shepard Discovery Center’s mission is to inspire every generation to reach for the stars, through engaging, artful and entertaining activities that explore astronomy, aviation, earth and space science.
Arts and Crafts
Read and memorize a Robert Frost poem. Have your students illustrate the poem in whatever artistic medium they prefer. A personal favorite is Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, which has been beautifully illustrated in this book by the same name. Another great choice for children is October, which lends itself well to art projects using fall leaves.
Create beautiful artwork with this lilac dipdot tutorial.
Make this favorite fall treat: Cider Donuts
Interesting Facts about New Hampshire
New Hampshire’s State House is the oldest state capitol in which a legislature still meets in its original chambers.
America’s Stonehenge is a 4000 year old megalithic (stone constructed) site located on Mystery Hill in Salem and presently serves as a leisurely, educational tour for the whole family.
The granite profile “Old Man of the Mountain” was once one of the most famous natural landmarks in the state. The Old Man’s head measured 40 feet from chin to forehead and was made up of five ledges. Nature carved this profile thousands of years ago, 1,200 feet above Echo Lake, but sadly, in May 2003, the Old Man of the Mountain slid off the mountain.
New Hampshire granite has journeyed to many places in the world to become part of monumental buildings. One of the most notable is the Library of Congress in Washington, DC, which was built from over 30,000 tons of New Hampshire granite.
New Hampshire’s smallest town is New Castle. The town is made up entirely of islands and covers less than one mile.
New Hampshire has the distinction every four years of holding the first primary Presidential election, drawing national attention. It’s first primary was held in 1916.
The Blue Ghost of Wolfeboro (pop. 2,979) is the U.S. Mail Boat for Lake Winnipesaukee. It makes a daily 60-mile loop delivering mail to 30 stops at camps and islands around the lake.
The 1995 blockbuster “Jumanji,” starring Robin Williams, was set and filmed in the city of Keene.
New Hampshire is the only state where seat belts are not mandatory, and one of only a few states where motorcycle helmets are not mandatory.
Watch this video about the history of the “Old Man of the Mountain.”
Learn about the first “snowmobile,” patented in West Ossipee, New Hampshire in 1917.
The Space Shuttle Challenger disaster played out live on television in January, 1986. If your older children are interested in seeing that coverage, you can do so here. Learn about the one tiny mishap that caused this terrible tragedy.
The Cornish–Windsor Bridge, which stretches 449 feet and 5 inches across the Connecticut River, linking Cornish, New Hampshire, with Windsor, Vermont. It’s the longest 19th-century covered bridge in America, a fixture since 1866. Take a virtual tour of all 54 covered bridges in New Hampshire, or look for covered bridges near your home.
New Hampshire Resource List
Book Basket (Picture Books)
G is for Granite by Marie Harris
The Escape of Oney Judge: Martha Washington’s Slave Finds Freedom by Emily Arnold McCully
Papa is a Poet: A Story about Robert Frost by Natalie S. Bober
Old Home Day by Daniel Hall (currently out of print, but may be available at your library)
Thank You Sarah: The Woman Who Saved Thanksgiving by Laurie Halse Anderson
Sarah Gives Thanks: How Thanksgiving Became a National Holiday by Mike Allegra
Book Basket (NonFiction)
New Hampshire’s Sights and Symbols by Jaycee Kuedee
The New Hampshire Colony by Kevin Cunningham
New Hampshire (Hello U.S.A.) by Dottie Brown (currently out of print, but may be available at your library)
Indians of the Eastern Woodlands by Rae Bains (currently out of print, but may be available at your library)
If You Lived at the Time of the American Revolution by Kay Moore
Maple Sugaring in New Hampshire by Barbara Mills Lassonde
The Abenaki by Colin G. Calloway (currently out of print, but may be available at your library)
Franklin Pierce: Fourteenth President by Mike Venezia (currently out of print, but may be available at your library)
Franklin Pierce by Barbara Somervill (currently out of print, but may be available at your library)
Poetry for Young People: Robert Frost by Gary Schmidt
Space by DK
The Story of the Challenger Disaster by Zachary Kent (currently out of print, but may be available at your library)
Bridges: Amazing Structures to Design, Build & Test by Carol A. Johmann
Birdwatching in New Hampshire by Eric A. Masterson
Book Basket (Chapter Books)
Sarah Whitcher’s Story by Elizabeth Yates
A Gathering of Days: A New England Girl’s Journal, 1830-32 by Joan W. Blos
Alan Shepard: Higher and Faster by Janet Benge
Daniel Webster, Defender of the Union by Bob Allen
The Heart of a Chief by Joseph Bruchac
I suggest creating a “unit study book basket” (a laundry basket will do) to fill with books from the book basket lists. You can use these books in your instructional time, for reading aloud, or for reading time for your students. Some of the nonfiction books have activities, experiments, and other hands-on learning opportunities to enrich your unit study.