The Presidio Museum offers educational opportunities for professional educators, homeschoolers, and family groups.  

Please see our General Rules for prices and also our Covid-19 Safety Policies. Read on to learn more about our offerings.

Programs below are listed from 100% live to 100% virtual.

Program 1: Morning Muster

On-Site Live Field Trip

Approximately 2 hours
Accommodates 8-30 participants  
$5 per child and chaperones free

While the Morning Muster program also supports Common Core curriculum for Arizona 3rd and 4th graders its small size allows for flexibility. It can be adapted for 3rd through 12th grades and/or to focus on a specific topic. Teachers will work with a Presidio Museum Outreach Specialist to customize a program that best suites their students. You will receive educational materials prior to their scheduled program to use to prepare your students for their field trip.

During your on-site visit your class will be broken into smaller groups to rotate through 4-6 stations that may include the following:    

  • Tinsmithing
  • Candle Making     
  • Games and toys of the Presidio
  • The life of a Presidio soldier
  • Calligraphy
  • Artifact display
  • Map Making

The minimum grade level for the Morning Muster is 3rd grade. The cost is $5 per student and chaperones are free. Underwriting for fees and buses is available for Title I schools, ask for more information.

Contact Ginger Thompson, Education and Outreach Manager, at gingert@TucsonPresidio.com for more information or to schedule your Morning Muster at the Presidio Museum!

Program 2: Friday at the Fort

An On-Site Live Field Trip

Approximately 4 Hours

Accommodates 50-75 Participants
$5 per child and chaperones are free

A Presidio Museum Outreach Specialist will make two appointments with your group. The first will be for an in-person or virtual visit at your location for a 30-45 minute age-appropriate presentation about the Presidio Museum and its history. The second will be for the on-site portion of the field trip. This field trip supports Common Core curriculum for Arizona 3rd and 4th graders.

For the on-site portion of your field trip your group will arrive at the Presidio and receive a brief recap of the history of the Presidio and Tucson. Then your group will be broken into smaller groups to rotate through several stations for approximately 4 hours. Stations may include the following (based on volunteer and staff availability): 

  • Children’s chores of early Tucson settlers     
  • Tinsmithing activity and blacksmithing demo     
  • Games children played before screens
  • The life of a Presidio soldier
  • Calligraphy
  • How to make adobe bricks
  • Tortilla making 

Friday at the Fort is restricted to 3rd and 4th grade students. Spaces are limited and fill up quickly. 
Program Contact Jean Baxter, Education Director: tbaxter559@aol.com

Program 3: History in the Field

Themed On-Site Live Field Trips

Approximately 2 Hours

Accommadates 5-12 participants (not including chaperones)
$5 per person. Chaperones must also register and pay to attend workshop.

Our Education and Outreach Department offers monthly pre-scheduled themed events during the months of October-May. Themes change monthly so please look at our calendar of events for more information. These programs are open to the public but do require pre-registration. Themes may include:

Theme A: Archaeology

Ages restricted to 9 and up.

You will begin with a visit to the Museum’s excavated Early Agricultural period pit house. You will also learn about the various artifacts found in archaeological excavations of downtown Tucson. You will learn how archaeologists document everything they find by analyzing artifacts and creating maps. You will use your information to figure out what was going on in that area. You will share your conclusions with the group. 

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Theme B: Early Peoples

Your group will time travel back to 400 C.E. to experience the daily life of the Hohokam. You will visit an excavated Early Agricultural period pit house and may engage in the following activities: using an atl-atl, using an early drill, and making a utilitarian basket or pot.

Theme C: How Did They Do That?

Cochineal bugs make this “scale” on prickly pear pads.
The bugs are collected and ground up to make a red dye
still used today in many of our products.

How did the people in 1775 (Indigenous and Spanish) build their homes and make their tools?  Activities will focus on Presidio-era living practices that are being re-learned today and may include: 

  • Making adobe bricks
  • Water harvesting 
  • Cochineal use and harvesting
  • Native gardening techniques  

Program Contact: Ginger Thompson,
Education and Outreach Manager, gingert@TucsonPresidio.com.

Program 4: Portable Presidio

Field Trip Format – At YOUR Site

Approximately 1.5 Hours

Accommodates 12- 40 participants (including adults).
$5 per student (for supplies and transportation of kits). Chaperones are free.

Can’t make it to the Presidio? Then check out our Portable Presidio! This is similar to the Morning Muster program but we come to you.  You will work with an Outreach Specialist to schedule your program. You will receive materials to use to prepare your students AND volunteers for their field trip. You may also request an in-person 30-45 minute age-appropriate presentation (dependent on volunteer/staff availability) about the history of the Presidio Museum to take place prior to your visit.  

On the day of your program two Presidio Outreach Specialists will bring the required supplies for your students to rotate through 4 stations.  

Activities may include:

  • Children’s chores of early Tucson settlers  
  • Tinsmithing
  • Games children played before screens
  • Calligraphy
  • Art

Only two Presidio staff members will be on-site. Activity stations must be supported by school staff or parents. Tables, chairs, and an open air site must be supplied by school or homeschool. Presidio staff will need at least an hour to set-up and prep the parent/teacher helpers.    

Program Contact: Ginger Thompson,
Education and Outreach Manager, gingert@TucsonPresidio.com.

Program 5: Museum in a Box

Week-long trunk checkout for up to 30 students
FEE PER BOX: $40 a week

In this program, you can rent an activity box that will have a teacher packet, materials, and the supplies for the registered number of children (up to 30). Some kits require some items to be supplied by the school. Provided directions will help teachers/parents to run an activity with their participants. Two box themes are available. Theme 1 is conducted without Presidio Museum staff interaction, however Theme 2 requires an in-person presentation when the box is delivered.

Theme 1: A Day in the Life of A Presidio Child

Kits available for rental include:

  • Children’s chores of early Tucson settlers  
  • Tinsmithing
  • Games children played before screens
  • Calligraphy
  • Art of Tucson
  • Archaeology

This theme is conducted without in-person Presidio Museum staff interaction.

Theme 2: Historic Hats of Arizona 

Your group will identify the hats in the box and do further investigation on the individual who would have worn that hat.  Your group will learn about the individuals from four different time periods:

  • Early peoples  (Before 1500’s)
  • Spanish Period (1500’s – 1821)
  • Mexican Period )1821 – 1854)
  • American Period (1854-present)

And will learn about the roles of

  • Women
  • Military
  • Workers and merchants of various ethnicities
  • Religious individuals

**This theme requires an in-person presentation by a Presidio Museum staff member when the box is delivered.

Program Contact: Ginger Thompson,
Education and Outreach Manager, gingert@TucsonPresidio.com.

Program Contact: Ginger Thompson,
Education and Outreach Manager, gingert@TucsonPresidio.com.

Questions?

Contact Ginger Thompson,
Education and Outreach Manager, gingert@TucsonPresidio.com.