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On this page you can find information about field trips, scavenger hunt downloads, and Frequently Asked Questions.
A visit to the Tennessee State Museum and Capitol are free. However, you must reserve a specific date and time through the museum’s scheduling office AND obtain a confirmation letter from the museum.
Looking for Virtual Field Trips? Click Here.
600 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Nashville, Tennessee
Capitol Tour 45-50 minutes
On a guided tour of the Tennessee State Capitol, you will join an educator on a 45 minute long guided tour. The tour will cover the history of the state of Tennessee, state and local government, and interesting stories of the building itself.
Standards: K.16, 1.15, 1.17, 1.17, 1.19, 2.22, 2.23, 2.24, 2.25, 2.26, 4.14, 4.39, 5.36, 5.47, 5.54, 8.23, 8.28, 8.53, 8.67, 8.68
1000 Rosa L. Parks Blvd., Nashville, Tennessee
In-person field trips are back! Museum educators are ready to guide your students through exhibit galleries and hands-on programs as you explore Tennessee’s history.
Each field trip consists of up to three guided programs, 30 minutes each, that your students will rotate through. Every program is led by a museum educator, standards-based, and will use artifacts, exhibits, and inquiry-based discussion to explore specific topics in Tennessee history.
Choose up to three programs that fit your needs. Two hours will be required to complete this field trip.
Who were the first people to live in the land we now call Tennessee? What were their lives like? Join us as we explore the prehistoric Native American artifacts in our collection and learn how these objects tell us about our state’s past. We will cover Paleo, Archaic, Woodland, and Mississippian periods.
Highlights include: A mastodon tusk, Archaic nutting stone, Mississippian moccasin, Human effigy statue, dugout canoe
State Standards Addressed: SSP.01, SSP.05, 3.19, 3.22, 5.27, 5.28
How did Tennessee go from a sparsely populated frontier to an American state that produced two U.S. presidents? Told through the perspectives of Native American tribes, enslaved African Americans, and white settlers, follow us from the early attempts to become a state to the “Age of Jackson.”
Highlights include: Conestoga Wagon, John Sevier’s watch, Richard Poyner chair, Chickasaw crafted moccasins
Standards Addressed: SSP.01, SSP.05, 3.31, 4.01 5.29, 5.30, 5.33, 5.34, 5.35, 5.36, 5.40, 8.13, 8.28
Explore with us the often-overlooked contributions and lives of African Americans in Tennessee’s early history. We will look at personal stories of individuals, free and enslaved, that lived in Tennessee pre-statehood to pre-Civil War.
Highlights include: Abraham Bledsoe portrait, Log cabin, Richard Poyner chair, Wessyngton plantation canning bench
TN Standards Addressed: SSP.01, SSP.05, 3.27, 3.31, 4.19, 4.21, 4.22, 8.34, 8.35, 8.36
Don't forget to "mind your Ps & Qs" in this interactive demonstration. A frontier printer will take your students through the process of 18th century printing. Learn how Benjamin Franklin & Tennessee's first printers George & Elizabeth Roulstone printed the news.
Highlights include: See a functioning colonial era print shop.
TN Standards Addressed: SSP.01, SSP.05, 1.25, 3.31
Follow the complex story of indigenous peoples' struggle against encroachment and removal from their homes and land. Ponder quotes from John Ross, Major Ridge, Andrew Jackson, and David Crockett, as we discuss what led to this tragic era in Tennessee history.
Highlights include: A dugout canoe, Cherokee Phoenix newspaper, Chickasaw moccasins, and a pitcher from the Treaty of Hopewell.
TN Standards Addressed: SSP.01, SSP.05, 4.18, 5.38, 8.47
The Civil War is one of the defining events in Tennessee history. What was it like for the average Tennessean? We will explore the debate over secession, major battles, soldiers’ lives, and the cost of war on individuals.
Highlights include: John Brown pike, 12lb. Napoleon cannon, a recreation of a soldier's tent, soldier’s prosthetic leg
TN Standards Addressed: SSP.01, SSP.05, 4.28, 4.34, 5.41, 5.42, 8.62, 8.63
Tennessee’s Reconstruction was very different from the other former Confederate States. This program examines the ways that African Americans, Unionists, and former Confederates confronted this new and rapidly changing era in the state’s history.
TN Standards Addressed: SSP.01, SSP.05, 4.39, 4.40, 5.43, 5.44, 5.45, 8.68, 8.70, 8.72, 8.73
With Reconstruction over and the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments ratified, African Americans still did not have equal rights. From Ida B. Wells to Diane Nash, learn how African Americans in Tennessee continued the fight for equality.
Highlights include: Nashville Sit-in stool, Martin Luther King poster, African American legislators, the story of the Clinton 12
TN Standards Addressed: SSP.01, SSP.05, 5.24, 5.50
The efforts of WWII were not only felt by the military forces overseas, but by the women serving on the home front. Students will explore the contributions of women during the war through rationing, working factory jobs, service roles, and inside the gates of Tennessee’s Secret City, Oak Ridge.
Highlights include: WASP uniform, ration book, Oak Ridge artifacts
TN Standards Addressed: SSP.01, SSP.05, 5.16, 5.20, 5.49
How was life for the early settlers of Tennessee different from students lives today? This program will explore the daily life for kids on the frontier through objects that would have been commonly found in the home.
Highlights include: A replica of a frontier cabin, A Conestoga wagon, Various household objects
TN Standards Addressed: SSP.01, SSP.05, K.02, K.06, 1.23, 1.25, 2.32
Use your critical thinking skills to analyze artifacts, draw conclusions, and determine what they tell us about Tennessee’s past. Can your students identify our “mystery artifacts,” what they were used for, and what they reveal about life in Tennessee?
TN Standards Addressed: SSP.01, SSP.02, SSP.04, SSP.05
How did you get your clothes on the Tennessee frontier? Follow the steps from harvesting raw materials to wearing a brand new shirt as we explore the job of clothes making. Join us in the fun, hands-on program to learn about how different life was to our own.
Tennesseans found many ways to join the war effort during the Civil War. While women couldn’t become soldiers, they did find other ways to help, including becoming spies. Can your students decode the clues and find important information by using actual methods from the Civil War? Find out with this hands-on program.
The best way to see the museum is by experiencing the interactive galleries. Students, led by their teachers and chaperones, will use a grade level appropriate scavenger hunt to explore through all five permanent galleries. On their journey they will see real artifacts like Daniel Boone’s musket, Andrew Jackson’s top hat and Dolly Parton’s suit, all while engaging with exhibit interactives.
When you arrive, a Museum Educator will greet your group, explain the museum’s manners, and lead your group to the gallery entrance to start your field trip experience.
Scavenger Hunts Download: Grades K-2, Grades 3-5, Middle/High School
TN Standards Addressed:
Grades K-2: K.02, 1.03, 1.07, 1.19, 1.21, 1.25, 2.03
Grades 3-5: 3.22, 3.29, 3.30, 3.31, 4.07, 4.18, 4.23, 4.27, 4.33, 4.37, 5.05, 5.09, 5.14, 5.24, 5.27, 5.28, 5.40, 5.42, 5.45, 5.47, 5.50, 5.51
Middle/High School: 8.28, 8.31, 8.35, 8.47, US.05, US.06, US.32, US.75, US.80
Available Tuesday through Friday starting at 1:00 PM.
With museum highlight tours, groups will be lead through all five of the museum's permanent galleries by museum staff. Each tour will highlight the extensive collection of the Tennessee State Museum as well as unique stories from across the state's history.
Please fill out the online reservation form and our scheduling coordinator will work with you on options best suited for your group.
No. Visiting the Tennessee State Museum and Tennessee State Capitol is entirely free. However, we do require that you reserve a date and time that will be confirmed by the museum scheduling staff via email.
You can request an on-site visit here: https://tnmuseum.org/field-trips-and-reservations
There are no indoor eating facilities at the Tennessee State Capitol or Tennessee State Museum at any time of the year or in any weather.
The Tennessee State Museum does have a first come, first serve covered patio with picnic tables groups are welcome to use, or groups may eat at Bicentennial Park next door.
Student groups may NOT eat in the Farmers' Market food court or outdoor barns without the approval of the Farmers' Market. Only groups that purchase food at the Farmers’ Market may eat on the premises. For more information, contact: email@example.com
Groups traveling by bus to the Tennessee State Museum or Tennessee State Capitol may request a permit through the scheduling office using the request form. If you do not indicate you are bringing a bus/van, you will be responsible for finding parking.
Private vehicles may park for free at the Tennessee State Museum (located between the Farmers' Market and museum on 1000 Rosa L. Parks Blvd.), or use parkitdowntown.com as a resource to find parking.
For any other questions, please contact Museum.Tours@tn.gov