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The Amish are a religious group in America who have different lifestyles relating to wearing outfits, using technology, and family life compared to the modern American family. The Amish live a simple life and follow strong Christian beliefs. They’re the direct descendants of the Swiss-German Anabaptists followers.
See the fact file below for more information on the Amish or alternatively, you can download our 24-page Amish worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
Key Facts & Information
HISTORY OF THE AMISH
- The Amish’s heritage can be traced back to the Protestant Reformation in Europe. During this period, there was a group of devout Christians from Zurich, Switzerland, who opposed the beliefs of the Catholic and Christian churches.
- This group strongly believes that baptism should occur when people reach adult age, not when they’re infants. This concept made them labeled as “Anabaptists,” which literally means “rebaptizers.”
- The Anabaptist’s way of life was heavily influenced by a scriptural doctrine of non-resistance. This doctrine teaches the principle of resisting evil, violence, and revenge. As a result, the Anabaptists rejected the obligation to do military service or any other acts of violence.
- Due to the difference of Anabaptists life principles compared to the State church, the Anabaptists often received persecution, torture, and in some cases – death. These tragedies forced them to worship in secret.
- To avoid the persecution, the Anabaptists later sought refuge in various locations throughout Europe. Many of them fled to the mountains of Switzerland, Southern Germany, Holland, even as far as Poland and Russia.
- Living as refugees made the Anabaptists develop methods of farming. This is where the Amish tradition started, where they built their strong agriculture works and began holding their worship services in homes rather than churches.
- In 1536, Menno Simons, a Catholic priest from Holland, joined the Anabaptist movement. His writings and leadership skills united many groups of Anabaptists, which led them to form a more specific Anabaptism segment, known as the Mennonites.
- He introduced the concept of the ban, or shunning, a part of Amish teachings, where the groups should not acknowledge a church member who does not repent his sinful actions.
- The ban, or shunning, was at first applied at the communion table. However, Jacob Amman, another priest, joined the Mennonite group and disagreed with the practices of his brethren. He believed that the concept of the ban should be more restrictive, which resulted in social avoidance by all church members.
- This belief, along with other eventual issues, made Amman and his followers decide to split from the Mennonite group in 1693. Jacob Amman’s followers were later known as “Amish.”
AMISH SETTLEMENT IN AMERICA
- The Amish began arriving in America in the early-to-mid 1700s at the “Penn’s land,” presently known as Pennsylvania. The idea behind the settlement started from William Penn, an Amish priest.
- William invited Amish members to move to America as a part of his “holy experiment” in promoting religious tolerance. At that time, many parts of America were still uninhabited. In the 1720s or 1730s, the first large group of Amish arrived in Lancaster County.
- Through the 18th and 19th centuries, the Amish communities had already multiplied. They expanded their residential areas outside of Pennsylvania, including Ohio, Indiana, Iowa, and Illinois.
- As time passed, the Amish culture and social development in America resulted in two different paths.
- Some of the early Amish integrated with society and became modern Mennonite congregations. The other Amish group still maintains their traditional and conservative lifestyles and became known as the Old Older.
- The Old Older Amish and Mennonite churches still share the same beliefs on baptism, non-resistance, and fundamental Bible doctrines. However, the Mennonite tend to be less conservative than the Amish. Most Mennonite members have relaxed dress-codes, allowing the use of cars and electricity, and have gone away from farm-related jobs.
THE LIFE OF AMISH
- Today, the population of the Old Older Amish has reached 250,000 people. The Old Older Amish can be found in 23 American states and in one Canadian province. Most of the Old Older Amish are currently living in Lancaster County.
- The Old Older Amish are famously known for their simple life. They prefer to maintain an old-fashioned lifestyle not influenced by technology and modern cultures.
- For instance, the Old Older Amish prefer to have lots of children since they considered large families to be a blessing from God.
- Each family member has a job, a status, and a responsibility. House chores are generally divided by gender. Girls often work inside the home with their mother, and the boys usually work with their father in the fields.
- Aside from English, most Old Older Amish speak a German dialect called Pennsylvania German.
- The Amish use horse carriages or “Amish buggies” as their primary transportation to move around. The Amish members feel using horse carriages promotes a slower pace of life.
- The Amish are also recognizably known for their plain clothing. Their clothing use neutral colors, cut, and subtle accessories. Some groups limit their clothing color to black (trousers, dresses) and white (shirts). The women wear capes and aprons. Amish people often sew their own clothing.
- The Amish build their own customized furniture that is generally made from 100% wood. This furniture-making skill is often passed by Amish fathers to their sons through generations.
This is a fantastic bundle which includes everything you need to know about the Amish across 24 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use Amish worksheets that are perfect for teaching students about the Amish which are a religious group in America who have different lifestyles relating to wearing outfits, using technology, and family life compared to the modern American family. The Amish live a simple life and follow strong Christian beliefs. They’re the direct descendants of the Swiss-German Anabaptists followers.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- Amish Facts
- Know the Amish
- Amish Population Maps
- Draw the Amish Family
- True or False
- Let’s Compare!
- Arrange the History
- Living with the Amish
- Multiple Choices
- Amish Values
- Moving with the Amish
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Link will appear as Amish Facts & Worksheets: https://kidskonnect.com - KidsKonnect, October 29, 2019
Use With Any Curriculum
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