Education Resources

Field Trips

We host over a hundred field trip groups every year.  Visit our field trips page for detailed information.

We will do our best to accommodate all tour requests.  Tour slots are filled on a first-come, first-served basis.  If you need your field trip to happen on a specific day or at a specific time, please schedule early to avoid disappointment.  Spring, especially May, is our busiest period for tours, and more flexibility may be possible at other times of the year.

UI Instructors

Museums are an ideal venue for active, engaged learning across disciplines. We encourage UI instructors to bring classes or assign students to use the building and our exhibits in classes, labs, and projects.  We can also arrange to bring objects and specimens from our extensive research and education collections to your classroom. We may be able to arrange for your class to meet with exhibit curators or educators. We can also serve as a venue for final reading, exhibit, or performance projects. Departments and colleges we've worked with include biology, earth and environmental science, English, history, rhetoric, creative writing, art and art history, and engineering. We are happy to meet to brainstorm ideas.

UI class visits should be scheduled in advance to prevent conflicts with other groups and field trips.  UI class visits are not limited to public museum hours; we are happy to arrange a schedule that works for your course.  

Discovery Trunks

Our resource trunks can be shipped to you anywhere in Iowa for use in classroom, library, homeschool, or other programs.  Thanks to generous funding through the university's Better Futures for Iowans initiative, there is currently no charge for trunk rental or outgoing shipping.  

Natural history trunks available through the Museum of Natural History include geology and natural history themes.  Additional trunks are available from the Old Capitol Museum and Office of the State Archaeologist, including multiple themes about Iowa history, cultures, archaeology, ecology, geology, and paleontology.  Check the full listing here.

To request a trunk, email uimnh@uiowa.edu or fill out the request form at http://discover.research.uiowa.edu/traveling-teaching-trunks/reserve-trunk.  We will make sure your request gets to the appropriate partner department.

The Discovery Trunk program has been expanded and supported through the State Historic Society, Inc., the University of Iowa's Better Futures for Iowans program, the National Science Foundation, the Iowa Science Foundation, and the Silos and Smokestacks National Heritage Area.  

Outreach Visits

Our professional educators visit schools, libraries, nature centers, community groups, and other gatherings throughout eastern Iowa.  Fees vary depending on your institution, your location, and the kind of program you have in mind.  Contact us at uimnh@uiowa.edu for more information or to arrange a visit.

Mobile Museum

In 2014, the Pentacrest Museums and the Office of the State Archaeologist partnered with the Office of the Vice President for Research and Economic Development to launch the University of Iowa Mobile Museum.  The Mobile Museum visits schools and events throughout the state, and can be combined with speaker visits, trunk loans, or other activities.  Visit the Mobile Museum webpage or contact us at mobile-museum@uiowa.edu to find out more.