Petaluma Adobe Educational Programs

Living History Program

Where You Add the Ingredient that Makes History Come Alive !


Live Rancho California from 1836 – 1848 ! Californios and Native Americans both experienced huge changes in their lives during this turbulent and exciting period of California History. Now your students can bring history to life through role playing, eating, working, and recreating this time-period in order to gain a deeper understanding of California history.

Students develop their historical character and costume in your classroom. Then, at the park, using tools and artifacts of the time period, your students will find themselves immersed in the life, production practices, and recreation of one of the largest remaining Ranchos of the period -- the Casa Grande-- Mariano Vallejo’s Petaluma Adobe.

Cooking traditional foods of early California, basket making, candle making, wool spinning and weaving, carpentry, leatherwork, adobe brick making, dancing, singing, and traditional games are samples of the activities children will experience. They will work in the Adobe’s production rooms, sleep in the Servant’s Quarters, stand night watch over a Petaluma landscape still populated by bats, coyote, ravens, and raccoons, and live the adventure of this historic period. Your students will leave this encounter with history Petaluma Adobe with a deeper historical understanding in spirit, mind, and body.

The program is one of the least expensive in California – only $350.00 for all your program materials except your food, and wood for your carpentry project. We offer a generous scholarship program and twice-yearly teacher and parent trainings.

We invite you to time-travel with us back to a time where vaqueros wore spurs and brightly colored silk sashes, women were known for their horsemanship and expertise, and children’s work was necessary for survival.

Essential Program Information

2019-2020 ELP Teacher Application

Scholarship Application