Washington State History Museum and Research Center are closed through December 14, 2020 per directives from the Office of the Governor related to COVID-19. Close

For grades 3-8, the History Lab facilitated field trip program is available during the academic year on Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays, with sessions from 9:30-11:00 AM or 11:20 AM-12:50 PM.

We strongly recommend at least one chaperone for every five students.

In the History Lab, students employ critical thinking and apply their own perspectives, led by a museum facilitator. Students become historians in this engaging, 90 minute facilitated field trip. Working in small groups, students learn about historical evidence by interacting directly with objects. Artifacts and ephemera are used as primary sources to explore Washington State’s history through object analysis and deep artifact-based inquiry.

The updated History Lab format offers more hands-on opportunities, interdisciplinary practices and concepts, and engaging questions.

Is a History Lab field trip right for your class? Check these requirements:

  • Your class is 3rd grade or above. (The labs are written at 4th grade and middle school levels).
  • You have only one or two adjacent grade levels. (Ex: A mixed 4th/5th grade group).
  • You have a minimum of 15 students.
  • Your class can visit on Wednesdays, Thursdays, or Fridays.
  • Your group can stay the entire time slot (9:30-11:00 AM or 11:20 AM-12:50 PM).
  • Our History Lab can accommodate up to two classes per time slot, or four classes per day.

If you can meet these requirements, feel free to book a History Lab field trip. If not, we welcome you to book a Self-Guided Field Trip, which offers greater flexibility with visit times and participant numbers.

If you plan on a History Lab field trip, prepare by placing students in chaperone groups based on their complementary strengths as these groups will work together in the History Lab. Also, explore our pre-visit lesson activities to prepare your students for their History Lab experience.

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.
  3. Use our online form to book a field trip.

For more information, contact the Education Department.

History Lab Lesson
History Lab

Pre-Visit

Click here for a brief pre-visit lesson on primary sources and interacting with objects.

Ready for artifact and ephemera analysis? Check out the pre-visit photo gallery as part of your pre-visit lesson.

History Lab Ephemera
History Lab

Extension Lessons

Ready for extension activities after your visit? Here is a post-visit activity for investigating artifacts in the classroom or at home.

You can also explore the artifact and ephemera you experienced in the History Lab lesson through this photo gallery.

History Lab Bridge
History Lab

Chaperones

Download a schedule and map to help your chaperones prepare for your school’s visit.