Discover the power of meaningful museum experiences!

* SMA’s school experiences utilize active learning techniques to build twenty-first century learning skills.
* All programs are aligned with TEKS and Common Core strands.
* A maximum of fifty (50) students may be registered per experience. Multiple visits/times may be scheduled to accommodate entire grade levels.
* School experiences are ALWAYS free for students, teachers, and required chaperones.
* Busing reimbursement is available for schools throughout Region 5, Texas, and Calcasieu Parish, Louisiana. Full details available online.

Book your experience online or call 409.221.6685.

We look forward to seeing you and your students during the 2017-2018 school year!
Please note, we request that school tours have a minimum of 10 students and a maximum of 50 students per visit.

To register, CLICK HERE.


Check out these other educational offerings:


Tour Offerings:


Pre-K – Kindergarten

Designed just for early learners, this 1-hour program combines interactive songs, story time, play, and art-making.
The Reading Rug: Curious Colors
Explore color and feelings! Students will observe colors, connect feelings with colors, enjoy a special story time featuring Yesterday I Had the Blues by Jerod Ashford Frame, and experiment with mixing colors while making their own watercolor painting.
The Reading Rug: P is for Pottery
Dig in to the art of pottery! Students will learn about the ancient art of pottery, connect pottery with everyday tasks like eating and drinking, enjoy a special story featuring The Pot that Juan Built by Nancy Andrews-Goebel, and make their own clay pot.
The Reading Rug: All About Animals
Go on an animal adventure! Watch for animals on a safari during a special story time featuring Over in the Forest by Marianne Berkes. Students will learn about animals that live in Southeast Texas, touch and learn about the tools artists use to make pictures of animals, and make an animal inspired masterpiece!
The Reading Rug: Texas Round-Up
Everything’s bigger in Texas – including a visit to the Stark Museum of Art! Cowboy and cowgirl up as we head to the ranch to discover all things western! Students will stalk wild horses and buffalo in the galleries, sing western songs around a make-believe campfire, hoot and holler during the story There Once Was A Cowpoke Who Swallowed an Ant by Helen Ketteman, and illustrate their own cowboy or cowgirl portrait in the art studio.
Click here to learn more about our early learning programs.

First – Third Grade

First through third grade programs are 1.5-hours, and include a 45-minute Museum visit and 45-minute Art Studio visit. These programs use interdisciplinary approaches to ignite student interest in the arts.
Folktales and Wagon Trails
Saddle up for an adventure in the Wild West! Students will practice storytelling and illustration while exploring folktales told throughout the American West during their visit to the Museum and create their own illustration of a traditional folktale in the Art Studio.
Art of Animals
Discover the animals living in the Museum! Search high and low for mammals, birds, and insects and uncover how artists create works of art featuring animals. Create our own animal-inspired work of art in the Art Studio.
Art Across America
All aboard! Go on an adventure in art and discover the people, places, and things from across the United States featured in the Museum! During this road trip across America, students will document their experience, including sketching, map-making, and creating a souvenir postcard in the Art Studio!

Fourth – Eighth Grade

Fourth through eighth grade programs are 2-hours, including a 1-hour Museum visit and 1-hour studio art experience. Programs focus on language arts, social studies, and the arts. The following programs are available:
Language ARTS!
Uncover how artists and writers use the same language. Students will use language arts activities to explore the Stark Museum of Art’s collection, comparing and contrasting, writing poetry, illustrating a prediction, distinguishing fact and fiction, and writing their own opinion of a work of art. During the studio art experience, students will create their own hand-bound sketchbook and illustrate the cover.
Treasures of the Collection
Discover your inner artist! Learn about the elements of art and explore masterworks in the Stark Museum of Art through sketching and journaling activities while connecting with social studies, language arts, and history curricula. During the studio art experience, students will create their own masterpiece inspired by the collection.
Do All Indians Live in Tipis?
Explore the American Indian collection at the Stark Museum of Art. In the galleries, students will be introduced to the Southwest American Indian tribes and grapple with common myths and frequently asked questions. Students also have the special opportunity to handle authentic, contemporary American Indian items while learning how American Indian arts and crafts continue to thrive today. During the studio art experience, students will use the traditional coil method to create their own air-dry clay pottery.


Ninth through twelfth grade programs focus on fine art and careers. These programs offer a range of opportunities to engage with the Museum’s collection and staff, including tours and studio art experiences.
Think Like an Artist
Step into the shoes of an artist and explore the Stark Museum of Art through an artist’s eyes during this 1-hour experience. Students will learn basic observation skills while identifying big ideas, key details, and what makes a work of art a masterpiece, all while learning about how the art observation can be used in a wide assortment of careers.
SMArt Jobs
Explore the many careers available in the museum profession during this 2.5 hour behind-the-scenes look at how a museum exhibition is created. Students will meet key Museum staff, discuss career paths and opportunities, and use critical thinking and problem solving skills to create their own to-scale, mock gallery during the studio art experience.
Gallery Sketching
Discover the art of sketching in the galleries during this 1-hour program. Students will learn how drawing is the foundation of all arts, as well as practice observational drawing skills, and learn techniques used by artists for centuries. Students of all drawing abilities are encouraged to participate. This program may be combined with additional high school offerings.

Museum and Garden Combination Programs

The Stark Museum of Art and Shangri La Botanical Gardens and Nature Center offer combined school field trip experiences for K-8 students. These programs integrate science, art, and history, and provide students the opportunity to explore topics deeply at both venues. These programs are 4.5hours long and may include an outpost tour. Students should bring a sack lunch for a half-hour lunch break. Driver should be prepared to shuttle between venues.
Collecting Conversations: The Science & Art of Collecting
5th – 8th Grades
Fall 2016 (September through December)
Who has a rock collection? Stamp collection? People collect things. During this 4.5 hour experience, students will delve into the science and art of collecting. At Shangri La, students will explore botany from an interesting perspective as we investigate the challenges (soil, light, identification, etc.) and rewards of collecting living plants. At the Stark Museum of Art, students will consider why people assemble collections and conduct experiments to explore how museums use science to care for their artifacts. Students should bring a sack lunch; there will be a half-hour lunch break at Shangri La. The bus driver should be prepared to shuttle students between Shangri La and the Stark Museum of Art during this lesson. This program will only be offered during Fall 2016 and does not include an outpost tour.
Audubon Adventures
1st – 4th Grades
Spring 2017 (February through May)
Experience the best of the Stark Museum of Art and Shangri La Botanical Gardens! For 4.5 hours, students will embark on an adventure to explore the natural habitats of Shangri La, and how John James Audubon changed the way we see nature. At the Gardens, students will experience meadow, forest, and bayou habitats while we search for the animals that live in these places. At the Museum, students will discover how John James Audubon and other artists rendered habitats naturalistically and then visit the Art Studio to create their own habitat-inspired art. Students should bring a sack lunch; there will be a half-hour lunch break at Shangri La. The bus driver should be prepared to shuttle students between Shangri La and the Stark Museum of Art during this lesson.

Combination programs have limited availability. To register, email a request to Jamie Massa at