American Girl: Kirsten Larson (January 2015)

Kirsten Larson might be retired, but she made a reappearance as our very first American Girl for our series. To get the public excited I made a mini display at our American Girl table with Kirsten’s books.


For my actual program, I started with a powerpoint about Kirsten Larson. I kept it fairly short, as all of the kids are in school. I talked about where Kirsten was born and why her family moved. I then very briefly talked about why they moved to Minnesota and what Kirsten’s family would have sought in this new land. This included what kind of chores Kirsten was expected to do and what she might have to do for fun.

I explained that Kirsten most likely did quilting as a fun activity. I did not want to hand out needles to little kids, so I found an alternative at Playdough to Plato. Scrapbook paper! I had a volunteer die-cut a bunch of one inch squares for me. I then made a simple quilt template for the kids. I then let the kids and their adults loose.


I gave a good thirty to forty minutes for the kids to design and glue their quilt together. Once someone was done with their quilt, I came around with different colored card stock for their border. I did not do any funky colors, as I wanted the quilts to be more authentic.

There were some really cool quilts!

edited quilts

After we were done making our quilts. We switched gears to the chores that Kirsten would have completed. One of these was making butter! I explained that she probably churned butter, but we were making butter with our shaking skills. The kids had a BLAST with this activity.


Once we were done making butter I gave everyone bread to eat with their homemade butter. I actually some of the kids licking butter out of the jars!

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This was a very successfully program. I actually had several parents/guardians ask me for the recipe to make the butter, as they wanted to do it at home!