Connecticut State Study

ConnecticutConnecticut was first settled by the Dutch who had claimed the land from the Connecticut River to the Delaware River for the Netherlands and named the area New Netherlands.  English colonists from Massachusetts soon outnumbered the Dutch colonists and New Netherlands disappeared when the city of New Amsterdam surrendered to the English in 1664 and the city was renamed New York.

Connecticut is situated adjacent to New York City and parts of Connecticut are counted as belonging to the Greater New York area, which, along with New Jersey, is called the tri-state area.  Connecticut’s coastline and navigable Connecticut River have given the state a history of maritime trade and fishing.  The southern and western parts of the state are heavily urbanized, giving Connecticut one of the highest population densities in the United States.  The northern and eastern parts of the state are more rural and have picturesque New England farm houses, inns, and public buildings.

Mystic, Connecticut. Photo by heipei, CC license, Wikimedia.

Fabulous Facts

  • The name Connecticut comes from the Algonquin word “quinatucquet” which means, along the river.
  • Connecticut’s population is more than 3.5 million.
  • Connecticut is about 27% Protestant and about 48% Catholic; most of the rest of the people are non-religious, but there are small populations of Jewish, Muslim, and Buddhists.
  • Connecticut doesn’t have county governments, the last vestiges being removed in 2000 when the sheriffs were disbanded and that role was taken over by state appointed law keepers.
  • PEZ candy is made in Orange, Connecticut.
  • Garnet is the state mineral of Connecticut.
  • In 1800 about 10% of Connecticut was forested.  Today about 60% of Connecticut is forested.
  • One of Connecticut’s nicknames is “the land of steady habits.”

Map of Connecticut Exploration

You can print this Connecticut Map, label it, and color it.  A few of the largest cities are marked.  Find more cities, natural features, and landmarks in a student atlas.  Look at a map of the United States and see where Connecticut is located.  Which states border Connecticut and which major waterways?

More Connecticut Fun

Connecticut is the site of lots of amazing early American history.  While you’re learning about Connecticut make a book showing some of the history of the state with pictures and captions.

This is the Nathan Hale Homestead. Don’t know who Nathan Hale is? Look him up. Photo by Sphilbrick, CC license, Wikimedia.

Connecticut also has picturesque architecture from early America like the classic colonial home above.  Learn about architectural styles as you view the state.

Look up the Connecticut State Flag and have your kids research the symbolism of the flag.

 

Learn about the types of wildlife that can be found in Connecticut.

Expeditions

If you get a chance to go to Connecticut you might visit the Mystic Seaport, the Florence Griswold Museum, which was the home of American Impressionism, the Mark Twain House where the famous author wrote Tom Sawyer and several other of his famous novels, or Yale University, one of the oldest universities in the United States.

Additional Layers

  • Connecticut is one of the wealthiest states in the union, with more million dollar homes than anywhere but California.  See if you can find out what makes this place prosperous.
  • Connecticut, like many other states, has a sales slogan.  Connecticut’s is “Still Revolutionary.”  Why do you think states have sales slogans?  What are they selling?  Is advertising a good use of state funds?  Why?  Does your state have a sales slogan?
  • Many Connecticut towns still have a village green in the center of town.  What was a village green used for in early America and what do people use village greens for today?

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