The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City offers many educational field trip opportunities. Ignite your students’ curiosity and enhance your classroom curriculum with one of the Museum’s interactive programs. Engage students through lively, inquiry-based conversations that challenge students to examine, explore, and share throughout the Museum.
Student ToursSchedule a Student Tour
Docent facilitated tours for students are offered Monday through Friday. The following guided programs are available. Each experience is designed to last 60 minutes unless noted otherwise.
Best of the West
The frontier was home to many indigenous tribes and settled by emigrants from across the globe. During this program students will compare and contrast Native American and non-Indian lifestyles, explore the legend of the American cowboy, analyze and interpret premier Western art using visual thinking strategy inquiry, and identify how artifacts and artwork help communicate the story of the West today.
Before it was “West,” this land was the ancestral home of many indigenous communities. Their culture is reflected in how they live, and the types of dwellings they inhabit. The migration of European immigrants brought about the loss of land and lifeways, but introduced trade, and new materials that were utilized in everyday life. This tour will explore how the First Peoples persevered and are working to reclaim and advance cultural continuity.
What is a cowboy? Where did cowboy traditions come from? In this program students will learn about the origins of the cowboy and what their daily lives looked like. Explore common myths popular culture has taught us and discover the rich diversity that makes up what we know today as the cowboy.
Oklahoma as the West
The frontier was settled by rugged, versatile pioneers from around the world. They moved into the new frontier for many reasons, and Oklahoma was no exception. Students will compare and contrast life in the state for its Native American population and turn-of-the-century settlers, analyze the role of the military including the Buffalo Soldier, explore life in a recreated turn-of-the-century frontier town, and make comparisons to their lives today.
Animals in Western Art
Track different animals in art and explore their habitats using verbal cues, animal tracks and fur. After a 30-minute tour, children have the opportunity to explore animal tracks through art activities for an additional 20 minutes.
Teacher-Directed Museum Visits
Teacher-directed tours are welcome anytime. Think about the Museum as an extension of your classroom. Create your own lessons, scavenger hunts, and self-guided field experiences or utilize one of the Museum’s inquiry-based gallery guides to explore. When you schedule your visit, staff can provide suggestions.
Space is limited for Special Programs; reserve a spot for your class at (405) 478-2250. Space provided to eat lunch.
Educational Outreach – STEM in the West
For schools outside the Oklahoma City metro, the Cowboy offers opportunities to discover the West and learn from Museum collections. Bring the Cowboy to you with this educational and engaging program that focuses on elements of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) in Western art and heritage! From cowboys on cattle drives to connecting the West through new communication, this 45-minute program explores the diverse reach that STEM has in the West. All programs must be booked 2 weeks in advance. Available Monday-Friday.