Teachers & Schools

The Boca Raton Historical Society offers educational programs and resources to public and private schools as well as homeschoolers throughout the academic year. Both on-site and outreach programs are available for educators. There are several resources available for educators who are seeking information and materials on local history. For more information on the programs, contact the Education Department at 561.395.6766 x307 or at education@bocahistory.org.

At the Museum

Ticket To Ride
This living history school program uses unique teaching tools: a 1930 FEC Railway passenger station and two restored 1947 streamlined rail cars - all located at the Boca Raton Historical Society's Boca Express Train Museum.
Students are engaged through both the field experience and supplemental classroom materials. The students role-play train crew members and passengers (local pioneers) in the year 1947 as they take a "trip" on the rail cars. The students discover the impact of the railroad on Florida's history; and they develop a connection to their own local history leading to a sense of place within their own community. At the conclusion of the program, didactic activities on railway safety from Operation Lifesaver will be distributed to each student.

Watch this video for a preview of Ticket To Ride!

The Ticket To Ride curriculum and its field experience at the Boca Express Train Museum is
- written to conform to the Florida DOE's Next Generation Sunshine State Standards
- aligned with the Common Core Learning Standards
- delivers FCAT compliant activities
- multi-disciplinary  
- structured according to the guidelines set by the National Trust for Historic Preservation
- approved by the School District of Palm Beach County.

/ / / /
Great News! Ticket To Ride is approved by the School District of Palm Beach County
and allows for funding to the Boca Express Train Museum.  
Written for grades: 3- 4 - 5
Time: 10:00 am to 12 noon
Location: Boca Express Train Museum
Maximum per group: 25 to 30 students


WE ARE A HIT! The following are samples of the teacher feedback whose students participated in Ticket To Ride:

This was an excellent field trip! My students thoroughly enjoyed the hands-on activities and it really helped them experience railroads and life in Florida in 1947. It was one of the best field trips we have been on and I am only sorry I didn't discover it five years ago when I began teaching 4th grade. Looking forward to next year's trip! ~ Northboro Elementary School 
Program provided the students with hands on, real life experience that enhanced their ability to realize what happened in the past. great for giving students the opportunity to understand a concept through experience. Best trip! Incredible! ~ Orchard View Elementary School

This field trip is so much fun! The children are truly involved in the historical experience and continue to talk about it for days! The activities are extremely motivating and the knowledge gained should encourage children more about the history of their community and country. Firsthand experience is always best and this field trip is very close to a firsthand experience...This is our favorite trip! 
 ~ Verde Elementary School

Students were given an opportunity to role-play and go back in time to capture a first-hand experience of how train travel impacted the growth of Florida. ~  Addison Mizner Elementary School

Students were extremely excited before the trip. Hands-on education is what excites the children and you did it
. ~  Addison Mizner Elementary School

It is our 4th grade tradition.  ~ Sandpiper Shores Elementary School

We so look forward to this trip as teachers because we are self-contained...This is one great trip from 1947 on!! Keep it up!! We love it!
~ Waters Edge Elementary School

The activities to do ahead of tme to prepare the students were easy to follow and helped the kids get background knowledge before our trip. The hands on experience brought history to life. Thank you
 ~ Boca Raton Elementary School

We enjoyed a wonderful morning and greatly appreciate your time and knowledge. ~ Saint Andrew's School

The students (and teachers and chaperones) learned so much about the history of their hometown! It is a wonderful, interactive program. Thank you! ~ Pine Crest School

Our 4th grade class has participated in the
Ticket To Ride program for the past two years. it is an excellent program! It has kept our students engaged throughout the experience from pre-visit through the post-visit activities. The program ties in our curriculum perfectly. ~ St. Paul Lutheran School

I thought the role-playing was important to relate to the feeling of the times. Lots of information was passed on to the students. It made fun of the work! ~ Boca Raton Charter School

Click here for more Teacher Feedback!


Boca Raton History Museum Tour

On the National Register of Historic Places, Town Hall houses the history museum containing exhibits from the Historical Society's collections. Students will learn about historic preservation while visiting the city's first municipal building. The 1926 historic structure is a tremendous teaching tool that highlights the pre-dominate architecture of the town and echoes the story of Boca Raton in the early 1900s. A short video on the history of Boca Raton and educational activities are part of the tour. Several of the seasonal exhibitions often reflect subject-related topics and may include a lesson plan.

Written for grades: 3-12
Length: 1.5 hours
Location: Boca Raton History Museum
Maximum per group: 25 to 30 students


The Museum Visits You

Pioneer Kids & You

This interactive classroom presentation introduces Boca Raton's pioneers. After Flagler's railroad arrived in 1895, settlers began to trickle in to the Boca Raton area - a sheer wilderness! What was life like for the first Boca Raton residents? What was school like for the pioneer children? Students will examine photos from the archives of the Boca Raton Historical Society as well as maps, diary entries, artifacts, and "thing-a-ma-jigs".

Written for grades: K-2 or 3-5
Minimum per group : 15 students
Length: 35 minutes (K-2)
             50 minutes (3-5)
Location: Classroom or History Museum

Resources for Curriculum Enrichment

/     Frank's Tweets
     This program is designed using today's technology to educate about local   history.        
     Pioneer Frank Cheebro uses Twitter to send out his journal entries about his days in
     1911. Follow Frank Chesebro (FC at twitter.com/BocaHistory.Learn more about this
     program at www.bocahistory.org/education/frank'stweets .

Lesson Plans
These lesson plans are available free of charge to teachers or home school educators who want to enrich their Florida history curriculum. 

Hometown Histories: Boca Raton
A curriculum designed to supplement Florida history at the local level. Click on the following titles for a preview:  

    The Railroad Comes To Boca Raton                      Three Communities, One Boca Raton
    Boca Raton's Land Boom and Land Bust               Tourists Come To Boca Raton
    World War II Comes To Boca Raton

Hometown Histories: Boca Raton includes A Teachers' Guide to Boca Raton History, providing a significant amount of resource information about Boca Raton's rich history, materials for the student activities, a CD for the visual arts extensions, and the opportunity to particpate in two different field trip experiences. Contact the Education Department for these additional materials. (education@bocahistory.org or 561.395.6766 ext.307)

Our Local History
Additional lesson plans developed for educators who are seeking supplemental materials for their classroom studies:

Our Local History: Addison Mizner Leaves His Mark
Our Local History: Conflicting Interests
Our Local History: Remember When.....

On-line Exhibits

Can't make it to the Boca Raton History Museum? The Museum provides on-line exhibits for cyber viewing! Remembering Pearl City is an excellent resource for learning about Boca Raton's historic African-American neighborhood and its residents. Check out other current on-line Exhibits for both educators and students on the historical society's website.

Video: The History of Boca Raton

History of Boca Raton

Through interviews, archival film, and more than 300 historical photographs, witness how a group of visionaries defined and helped develop this city. Hear pioneers, residents, and historians describe Boca Raton's early days and its many changes. In its brief history, this original small pioneer farming community was continually redefined: first, as an exclusive destination for the rich; then as a World War II radar training base; a 1950s family tourist destination; a religious vacation center; the birthplace of IBM personal computer; and finally as a wealthy, bustling, year round city.

This 50-minute documentary is offered to teachers free of charge

Books for Boca

  Books for Boca is a community-wide program developed and facilitated by the Boca
  Raton Historical Society. Corporations, organizations, and individuals participate by
  underwriting the cost of a set of books entitled A Stroll Through Boca Raton's
  Early History From A to Z
for individual school classrooms or a school library.
  Teachers may contact the historical society to request or suggest a sponsor for a set
  of books to be donated to their classroom or school's media center.
  A Stroll Through Boca Raton's Early History From A to Z is an excellent resource for
  the elementary (and middle) classroom. As a learning technique, A-Z works well with
 children of all ages since younger children can relate to the alphabet and pictures while older students are able to read and relate to the text. The educational children's book was written by Deborah Marraffino Rothberger in collaboration with the Boca Raton Historical Society. She has lived in Boca Raton since 1969 and has taught fourth and fifth grades for more than 15 years. She holds a B.S. in Elementary Education and a master's degree in Reading (K-12).

Archival Services

The Boca Raton Historical Society's library is available to all teachers (and students) for local historic research and tours. The BRHS collections contains a large variety of resources such as diaries, maps, reference books, historic photos, oral histories, city directories, etc. that can serve as primary resources and additional research materials.

The Archives Department has recently digitalized back issues of its local Newspaper Collection, (Boca Raton News, The Pelican, and The Tattler), as well as its own published Spanish River Papers. These hometown newspapers are available through the BRHS website and the Archives Department, located at Town Hall.

71 North Federal Highway|Boca Raton, Florida 33432
P: 561.395.6766 F: 561.395.4049|Monday - Friday 10:00am - 4:00pm
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