School Programs

Bring your class for a day of engaging experiential in-gallery learning with turnkey solutions designed to complement classroom education. In addition, our programs integrate with Arizona state curricula standards for third through sixth grade.

Funding for museum admission and bus transportation for the 2019-2020 school year is available to Title 1 designated Arizona schools.



Homeschool days are also available.

These four-hour, primarily self-directed sessions are designed to accommodate a variety of age levels and include hands-on activities throughout the galleries, as well as special guests that bring lessons to life.

Request a time and date for your school’s visit by completing the field trip application form and submitting it to Education Manager Wade Weber at You may also contact him via email or at 480-530-3461 for more information.

Download the school field trip application form here.

Download the Title 1 school field trip application form here.




SMoW’s educational offering includes six educational themes for the 2019-2020 academic year including:

  • An Introduction to the American West –Students will learn how the natural resources, wildlife and diverse civilizations of the American West came together to shape livelihoods such as ranching, influence art and culture, and create opportunity for a growing nation. This overview of the early events and populations that influenced the formation of the West includes an emphasis on the story of the American bison, the largest mammal to roam the plains, and offers students a chance to meet our life-size model, affectionately dubbed “SMoW.”
  • The Oregon Trail and Westward Expansion Students will hear the stories of courage, perseverance, resilience and hope that were an essential part of heading West and the quest for a better life. They will experience the journey of the Lewis and Clark Expedition through interpretive activities that blend objects and storytelling into a dynamic portrayal of the adventures and challenges faced by the expedition team.
  • Moments in Arizona History– This education offering highlights Arizona’s historic events as depicted in a series of paintings created by artist Bill Ahrendt, which provide the framework for compelling storytelling and enables students to discover the key events and personalities that shaped the Grand Canyon State.
  • The Five Cs of Arizona– Students will learn about the defining role of Copper, Cattle, Cotton, Citrus and Climate played in the development of our state. This exploration delves into the influence and impact of the Five Cs and will also challenge students to consider how we might revise this list to reflect today’s Arizona.
  • Spanish and Mexican Influences in Arizona– The Vaquero (Spanish cowboy) tradition helped shape the ranching industry in Arizona. Students will learn how cowboy skills and culture evolved from these horsemen and gain a better appreciation for life in the saddle as they try their hand at roping and other skills. Stories about the life of missionary and explorer Father Kino help provide additional links to early Spanish culture and the historic impact on the region.
  • Sustainability– How we meet today’s needs without compromising those of future generations is an increasingly important and relevant conversation. SMoW’s building is Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) Gold Certified and underscores the museum’s commitment to healthier spaces that reduce stress on the environment. Students will encounter sustainable elements of design, landscape and architecture, while learning about “green” principles.