Student Programs at the MSV
The Museum of the Shenandoah Valley offers unique opportunities for student, scout, and homeschool groups of all ages. Discussion-based tours can focus on Art, History, the Gardens, or have a mix of all three. In addition to gallery and garden tours, your field trip to the MSV can include one of our programs (listed below) with age-appropriate hands-on activities. For groups unable to visit the MSV, we also offer outreach programs, interactive virtual tours, and online resources.
Our galleries and offerings are always changing. The Shenandoah Valley Gallery focuses on the history of the valley and the people and cultures which shaped it. A variety of traveling art exhibitions and pieces from the MSV collections rotate through the Changing Exhibitions and Founders Galleries. Learn more about the exhibitions currently on view.
Plants and Seeds While looking at the MSV Gardens, your group will discuss the parts of a plant and what they need to grow. In the garden classroom, students will have an opportunity to plant a seed in a cup to take home and observe as it germinates and grows. This program is ideal for Kindergarten – 4th grade.
Mapping the Valley Your group will discuss colonial surveyors, like James Wood and George Washington, in the MSV Gardens. They will look at several maps and surveys as well as the types of tools and technology used to make them. Students will then have an opportunity to complete a survey in small groups. This program is ideal for 6th grade and up but can be adapted for younger grades.
Think Like a Curator Utilizing critical thinking and collaborative learning, this program allows students to look at history through the eyes of a museum curator. While handling and inspecting historical objects, classmates will discuss not only how they affected daily life, but also how to preserve and care for them. This program is ideal for 6th grade and up.
Makerspace Art Activities After discussing works of art on display in the MSV galleries, students will have a chance to apply what they have learned as they create their own masterpieces. Projects vary as exhibits change and to accommodate for skill level, time allotment, and group size. This program is ideal for all ages. *additional $2 cost per student*
Watersheds Discover the headwaters of the Town Run in the MSV Gardens. While discussing the local watershed, students will have opportunities to test the water quality of the freshwater springs and identify macroinvertebrates from our wetlands. This program is ideal for 6th grade and up. *additional $2 cost per student.*
Challenges getting your students to the MSV? Let us bring an outreach program to your classroom! Our educators are ready to bring touchable objects from Shenandoah Valley education collection to your classroom to discuss the people and cultures who settled and shaped the valley. Several of the popular programs listed above can be brought for outreach as well.
Join our museum educators for an interactive virtual tour in the MSV Galleries. Students will be able to ask and answer questions while seeing current exhibitions in the gallery space from their classroom or while learning remotely. Programs are currently available through Zoom or in your Google meeting.
We offer a variety of digital resources for student learning. Submit a completed student tour request for information and to access online resources for your students.
Activity Sheets and Videos (1st – 5th grade)
Primary Resources (6th – 12th grade)