Self-Guided Visits

Following health and safety guidelines related to COVID-19, as issued by the Washington State Department of Health and the Governor's Office, and the resulting school closures, Washington State History Museum is closed to the public until further notice.

We thank you for your understanding and patience as our region works to limit the impacts of the pandemic. We look forward to welcoming you for self-guided field trips during the 2020-21 academic year. 

If you have questions, please email Lead Programs Manager Molly Wilmoth at

Grades K-12 
We strongly recommend at least one chaperone for every five students. 
If your class is working on a special project or will do well exploring at their own pace, a self-guided visit is for you.
Entering the Great Hall is like stepping into another world. The Great Hall features exhibits on Washington State history from time immemorial to present day. Learn about Native heritage in our plank house, frontier life in our replica store, the variety of industries in Washington state, and much more.
Your class will receive a short orientation to the museum when you arrive, then will be free for self-guided exploration.If you are going on a self-guided field trip, please bring an activity to deepen and support your students’ learning in the museum. Please use an activity provided in our Field Guide or create your own activity sheet. (If you create your own activity, please provide an answer key or extra copy to our staff at the main floor admissions counter. This will better enable us to assist your students in the galleries.) 
The self-guided option also includes access to temporary exhibit galleries. However, when a group of students is engaging in a facilitated History Lab field trip, we ask other school groups in the museum to not enter the History Lab space. This includes not passing through the History Lab space to view  the model railroad. We regret the inconvenience, but find it important for the learning of the students in the History Lab.
Next Steps
Once you have selected which type of field trip is best for your group:
1. Explore funding options for your group on our Field Trip Costs and Scholarships webpage.
2. Please review our Know Before You Go webpage for guidelines about the logistics of your visit. 
For more information, contact the Education Department

Explore the Museum

The Great Hall of Washington History is rich with information and artifacts that will meet state and Common Core Standards as well as enhance the lessons taught in the classroom.  To see what featured exhibits will be on display during your visit, visit our featured exhibits page.

Visit Materials

Students who are actively engaged get the most out of their museum visit. Check out the Gallery Activities page for printable worksheets.

Chaperone Schedule

Download a schedule and map of the Great Hall for chaperones visiting the museum.