During the 2019-2020 school year, the National Building Museum will offer reduced school and youth group programming options while we redesign and rebuild our offerings for the future. The Museum is closed to the public from December 2, 2019 to March 2020. Beginning in October 2020, we will begin offering a full slate of new opportunities for the 2020-2021 school year.
Self-Guided School Group Visits
Until December 2, 2019 and again when the Museum reopens, special rates for groups of ten or more are available by making a reservation.
All grade levels. $5 per person, minimum of ten students. Title-1 discounts are available.
Exhibition Activity Guides
The following activity guides are available for teachers and chaperones of PreK-2nd grade students who register for a self-guided group visit:
Activity cards in the Animals, Collected exhibition help guide students in exploring, understanding, and connecting with some of the many ways people tell stories and express emotions. Activity cards are standards aligned.
House & Home
Use lesson plans and laminated photographs in the House & Home exhibition to make deeper connections about your students’ place within a broader community, as well as spark discussion about the ideas of location, diversity, and change over time.
PLAY WORK BUILD
Download this activity guide and bring it to the Museum to create connections between design, building, and problem-solving with your students in the exhibition. For use in the exhibition PLAY WORK BUILD on the Museum’s second floor.
CityVision is a multi-visit program for students from middle schools in the fall and spring semester. Students spend one full school day for six weeks at the Museum, working with Museum staff as well as volunteer professionals and university students in the fields of architecture, urban planning, or education. They work in studio teams to explore D.C., develop creative solutions to addresses community needs, and defend their designs to a panel of professionals.
Evicted Teaching Guide
Developed in conjunction with the Museum’s 2019 exhibition Evicted, this teaching guide provides tools and resources to engage 6th – 12th grade students in analyzing, discussing, and proposing solutions to the complex social issue of eviction in the United States. The guide includes background information from the exhibition and a format for facilitating open collaborative inquiry that can be applied to other topics.
St. Elizabeths Teaching Guide
Developed in conjunction with the Museum’s 2018 exhibition Architecture of an Asylum: St. Elizabeths 1852-2017 this teacher guide includes historical information and activities that focus on understanding the connection between a space’s design and how people use and interact in it. Students analyze primary sources like historical photographs, maps, and architectural drawings to research the theory of moral treatment and architecture to treat mental illness at St. Elizabeths.
Download the lesson plan (PDF)
This teaching guide was generously supported by the General Services Administration.
Teaching Kits for Schools
The Museum’s boxed teaching kits include multi-lesson curriculum units, resources, and materials for analyzing the built world in your classroom. They are available for sale through the Museum Shop.
Bridge Basics (grades 5-9) uses bridge engineering and design as vehicles for exploring and solving problems.
Green Community (grades 5-8) provides a comprehensive approach to studying green, sustainable communities.
Designing for Disaster (grades 7-9) teaches students about the tools design professionals employ to limit the impact of natural disasters on structures, communities, and people.