Visit us At 5th and Market Streets on Independence Mall



Education

K-12 and Preschool

Situated on Philadelphia’s historic Independence Mall - just a block from the Liberty Bell - the National Museum of American Jewish History offers a range of uniquely engaging and interactive visits for students of every age. NMAJH presents educational programs featuring primary sources and original artifacts that inspire in people of all backgrounds a greater appreciation for the diversity of the American Jewish experience and the freedoms to which Americans aspire.
 
Numerous research studies demonstrate measurable benefits associated with integrating a museum experience into the classroom curriculum. NMAJH offers students an interdisciplinary and inquiry-based museum experience that builds on school curricula and enriches their lives. Our educational activities are aligned with the Common Core and National Standards in Language Arts, Social Studies, History, Civics, and Government.

Need more information? Please contact the Education Department at 215-923-3811 x 153 or education@nmajh.org.

Planning Your Visit

Scholarship


NMAJH is committed to making our educational programs available to all schoolchildren regardless of financial means.

    • Title I schools are automatically eligible to receive a scholarship to cover the cost of admission and transportation.
    • All schools may apply for need-based scholarships, available on a first-come, first served basis. 

      The scholarship program is made possible by the generous support of individual, foundation, and corporate donors.

      Book your visit! 

      • Each educational program is about 90 minutes. Please allow at least two hours total for your Museum visit.
      • Lunch space may be available with advance registration.
      • See more detailed pricing information below (if applicable to your group)

       For more information and to start planning your visit, please use our Group Visits Inquiry form. You can also contact Group Services at 215-923-3811 x 141 or email groups@nmajh.org.  
       

      Please indicate your interest in a scholarship or transportation reimbursement in the "Notes" section of the Group Visits Inquiry form.

        K-12 PROGRAMS AND ACTIVITIES

        Our object-based lessons provide students with opportunities to develop skills in comprehension and critical thinking through close engagement with primary documents, historic artifacts, maps, and interactive visual and audio displays. Through active learning outside of a formal classroom, students learn to observe, listen, and participate effectively in group discussions. These lessons can serve as compelling topics for project-based curricula and individual research projects.

        To see how a Museum visit may support Common Core and the national and Pennsylvania standards in Language Arts, Social Studies, History, Civics, and Government or to see the specific curriculum connection of an individual program, please contact education@nmajh.org.

        Museum Programs and ActivitiesPre-K K-3
        4-5
        6-8
        9-12
        College
        Becoming American History of Immigration 1880s-1924
        Unique Promise and Imperfect Freedom: American Jews and WWII   
        On a Mission!    
        Values in Action    
        In their Shoes     
        Circles & Squares: Shapes in the Museum     
        Travel & Transportation     

        Featured Programs

        Becoming American: History of Immigration 1880s-1924 (grades 4 and up)
        Delve into the life of the American immigrant at the turn of the 20th century, connecting individual experiences to the larger context of American history. Starting with a Traveling Suitcase visit to your school and followed by a Museum tour, students use artifact replicas, object-based inquiry, and hands-on activities to learn about immigrant life through the eyes of Eva Baen, who immigrated to Philadelphia as a young woman in 1913. Using primary sources to develop critical thinking skills, this program chronicles the immigration of over 23 million people to the United States at the turn of the 20th century. Students also learn about stories of contemporary immigration and celebrate each other’s cultures and traditions. Participants have an exciting opportunity to “meet” Eva Baen, through our partnership with Historic Philadelphia, Inc.!

        This is a two-part program that involves a visit to your classroom and a tour at the Museum on a later date. Versions of this program are available for all ages and may include classroom visits, first-person interpretation, and distance-learning opportunities. For more information on distance learning, click here.

        In their Shoes: Three Generations of Dreamers and Doers (grades 4-6)
        Through interactive activities, students imagine what life was like in colonial America, in a wagon on the Oregon Trail, and in a busy immigrant neighborhood during the early 1900s. Putting themselves in the shoes of different people, students are provided with an opportunity to better understand the similar and different challenges and opportunities that life in America offered in the past.

        On a Mission! (grades 4-7)
        This program sends students “on a mission” to explore key artifacts throughout the Museum that they will later share with their classmates. As junior tour guides, students become mini-experts on various artifacts in the galleries and educate their peers through storytelling, role-playing, movement, and questioning. This program serves as an excellent first time visitor activity.

        Values in Action (grades 6 and up)
        Explore the lives of ordinary people throughout the history of American Jewry who were determined to make positive change. What values did they demonstrate and how can we embody those values today? This tour inspires and motivates students to think about how to put their own values into action.

        Unique Promise and Imperfect Freedom: American Jews and WWII (grades 6 and up)
        Explore stories of American Jews as they faced discrimination and achieved victories in the name of tolerance and acceptance, from the colonial period through the present day. Place their experiences and actions in the larger context of America’s enduring legacies and ongoing struggles with religious, ethnic, and racial freedom.

        This tour can be supplemented by a talk with a Holocaust survivor, subject to speaker availability.

        PRESCHOOL PROGRAM

        Bring your students for a stimulating and rich sensory experience in a child-friendly environment! Through stimulating field trips and a variety of educational programs, the Museum provides the types of learning experiences that contribute to the social, cognitive, and emotional development of young children. 

        Groups are limited to 30 students. 

        Circles & Squares: Shapes in the Museum   
        Enhance preschoolers’ ability to recognize and distinguish circles and squares in objects both in and outside of the Museum through a series of activities including an interactive reading, an exploration of the galleries, and an arts and crafts project.

        Travels & Transportation
        Interactive reading, gallery exploration, and arts and crafts will engage preschoolers with an exploration of various forms of transportation. They will learn about how transportation has developed and changed through time and discuss some of the reasons people have to travel.

        For more information and to start planning your visit, please contact education@nmajh.org.

        SPECIAL EXHIBITION EDUCATION PROGRAM

        Sifting Through Ashes
        October 27, 2017 – January 15, 2018

        On view for the first time at a national museum, Sifting Through Ashes demonstrates the unique and important role of contemporary art in educating new audiences about the Holocaust. Bruce Gendelman's photographs and large oil paintings explore his struggles with bearing witness to the Holocaust.

        Click here to learn about our special November 17 event, where students have a unique opportunity to meet artist Bruce Gendelman.

        Please contact Charlie Hersh at chersh@nmajh.org or 215-923-3811 x 272 for more information on school tours of Sifting Through Ashes.

        For more information about Bruce Gendelman and Sifting Through Ashes, please visit nmajh.org/SiftingThroughAshes


        Leonard Bernstein: the Power of Music
        March 16 - September 2, 2018

        Beyond West Side Story, students can explore lesser-known stories about Bernstein, whose love of learning and teaching, public celebrity, and musical talent inspired social change

        Details on Bernstein-themed education program coming soon.

        For more information about this world premiere special exhibition, visit NMAJH.org/Bernstein.

        OTHER EDUCATION EVENTS

        Museum Event: Courageous Choices – Finding Your Creative Voice
        This special Museum program offers an interactive museum exploration that highlights the lives of American Jews who overcame obstacles and found their creative voice. It is followed by a dynamic performance or conversation, where students hear first-person accounts from individuals who have made courageous choices or used art to find their creative voice.

        The content of Courageous Choices is aligned to Common Core and National Social Studies and History Standards. Students will analyze and interpret documents, museum text, and a performance in order to develop an understanding of contemporary and historical figures who exemplify the principles of American values and freedom.

        Recommended for grades 6 and up.

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        We’re happy to partner with award-winning actor, dancer, and instructor Khalil Munir, in our signature Courageous Choices program, at which he performs 1 Pound, 4 Ounces. A Philadelphia native, Munir chose the arts as a path away from despair and misfortune. 1 Pound 4 Ounces is the riveting one-man show combining impassioned storytelling with music and improvisational tap dance. Having overcome adversities including a broken home marred by drugs and incarceration, as well as devastating childhood learning hurdles, Munir has conquered that and much more, emerging as an artistic risk-taker and respected role model.

        Courageous Choices dates for the 2017-2018 school year:

        • Wednesday, October 18, 2017
        • Thursday, November 30, 2017
        • Tuesday, January 23, 2018
        • Thursday, February 22, 2018
        • Friday, April 6, 2018
        • Tuesday, June 5, 2018

        Museum Event: Courageous Choices – Sifting Through Ashes
        Friday, November 17, 2017

        In conjunction with our special exhibition, Sifting Through Ashes, students will have a unique opportunity to meet with artist Bruce Gendelman. Students will learn about his visits to Auschwitz, the accomplishments of his father who fought in WWII, and the importance of learning about the Holocaust today.


        For more information, contact Charlie Hersh at chersh@nmajh.org or 215-923-3811 x 272.
        To reserve, contact groups@nmajh.org or visit nmajh.org/education
        Scholarship and bus reimbursement is available for financially eligible organizations.

        Accessible Programming


        “We are always treated warmly. My students' special needs are always accommodated.” -- High School Educator, Philadelphia, PA
         
        We are committed to ensuring that the opportunity to learn from our collection is available to all. Therefore, we offer tours that are customized to students’ levels of comfort and ability, both physical and cognitive. Experienced educators are available to facilitate these tours and activities. We will work with you to adjust our programs to your students’ needs.

         Please refer to our K-12 Lessons and Activities to choose a program. We will work with you to adjust the program to your group's needs.

        Long Distance Opportunities

        Bring the Museum to Your Classroom: Traveling and Virtual Lectures Series

        We are pleased to bring the excitement of the Museum directly to your community and inspire your students to further explore the Museum’s collection in-person or online. Museum educators are available to visit your classroom in-person or virtually (via video conference). We also offer Teacher Kits filled with lesson plans and resources. For more information, please visit NMAJH.org/distance_learning/ or email us at education@nmajh.org!

        Pricing
         

        K-12 Schools and Youth Groups
        Price includes admission and guided activity. 
        $12 per child; space is limited to 100 students.*
        1 chaperone required per 10 students.** 

        Traveling Museum — we come to you!
        $150 for the first presentation; $50 for each additional presentation on the same day. An additional travel fee may be charged based on the distance from the Museum.
        Up to 4 presentations per day, and up to 35 participants per presentation.
         
        Preschools
        Price includes admission, guided lesson, and an optional arts & crafts activity. 
        $6 per student, space is limited to 30 students.*
        1 chaperone required per 5 students.**

        * For groups larger than the limit, please contact Group Services at groups@nmajh.org or call 215.-923-3811 ext. 141
        ** Required chaperones receive complimentary admission. There is a cost associated with additional chaperones.