Educator-Led Programs

Our education programs are designed to encourage students to think critically, problem-solve, and work side-by-side with their peers while taking full advantage of Berkshire Museum’s unique collection, one that combines natural science, art, and history. The emphasis is always on creativity and innovative thinking.

Availability: Monday through Friday, with starting times from 9:30 am

Program Group Size: 10 to 25 students per program

Museum educator-led programs require advanced reservations. 

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Living World

Amazing Reptiles: Encounter live turtles, snakes, and lizards and observe each animal’s adaptations for survival. Explore how they sense the world around them and see how they crawl, climb, and slither.

Aquarium Exploration: Activities focus on the traits and behaviors of aquatic life in the aquarium. Observe live coral, exotic fish, and touch live invertebrates like starfish and sea urchins to learn about their habitats and adaptations.

Mammal Adaptations: Compare and contrast different pelts, skulls, and teeth to determine how Berkshire mammals have adapted for survival. Using what they have learned through careful examination, students will use their detective skills to examine and identify a mystery skull.

Metamorphosis: Step into a world of butterflies. Don’t be fooled, these delicate-looking creatures are made to survive! What better way to understand the lifecycles and survival strategies of butterflies than to get up close and personal? Ponder why butterflies have different colors. Explore how butterflies see their world. Inquire about how they have adapted to survive in each of their stages of life.

Rock On! Become a geologist and explore the mysteries hidden deep within the earth! Students will roll up their sleeves and, using scientific tools and our mineral collection, play games to find out: What makes the earth quake? Why are some minerals magnetic? What’s really happening inside a volcano?

Shaping History /  Human Fabric

Ancient Explorations: Rome wasn’t built in a day but explore how it was built in just under an hour! Journey to the ancient world and learn about religious beliefs, mummification, art, language, technology, and everyday life through artifacts and activities.

Mohicans Then and Now: Learn about the daily lives of the Mohicans, Berkshire County’s earliest residents. Climb inside our authentic wigwam, use tools, try on period correct clothing, play instruments and handle objects from every day Mohican life. This year, we look forward to offering an expanded, updated program in collaboration with representatives of the Stockbridge-Munsee Band of Mohican Indians.

Perceive and Process

Forensic Investigators: Delve into the world of forensic science and discover the techniques and technology used to solve the crimes of yesterday and today. Students will put their newly learned detective skills to work as they attempt to unravel the ancient and current Museum mysteries.

The Physics of Fun: Discover how scientific principles of force, gravity, inertia, and friction make simple and complex machines move through the exploration of toys and gadgets from the last 50 years.

Electricity: We rely on electricity every day when we flip on a light, talk on the phone, and watch TV, but this familiar force can still seem mysterious.  Learn how electrons are harnessed to flow through wires, making modern life possible, and gain hands on experience building electric circuits to power lights and motors.

Make and Create

NEW! da Vinci Machines: This new program will be offered in conjunction with the exhibition, Machines in Motion, beginning mid-February. Through hands-on experimentation and guided exploration, this program will introduce and reinforce basic principles of physics and engineering, and provide students an opportunity to design and build their own simple machines.

Poetry of Art: Through guided observation, students imagine being part of a painting, exploring the scene “inside-out.” Strengthening their language arts skills, students enhance their descriptive vocabulary by creating stories and images of personal expression inspired by the artworks.

Lab 102: Lab 102 is a rapid prototyping space with a range of hands-on activities designed to inspire children to explore their skills in invention, innovation, problem solving, and collaboration. Flexing their abilities in these key areas builds confidence and empowers kids to succeed, not only in school and play, but in their futures. The Lab 102 program is on hiatus during the run of Leonardo da Vinci: Machines in Motion.

Accessibility

In our ongoing efforts to promote greater access for all visitors to the Museum, we are proud partners in two special admission programs: Museums for All, a signature access program of the Association of Children’s Museums and the Institute of Museum and Library Services, and the Massachusetts Cultural Council’s new EBT Card to Culture initiative, undertaken in partnership with the Executive Office of Health and Human Services and their Department of Transitional Assistance. These programs enable low-income families to visit Berkshire Museum FREE with the presentation of an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card.

Any student at Herberg, Reid, Taconic, or Pittsfield High School may present their student ID at the front desk for free admission between the hours of 2 and 5 pm on weekdays during the school year.

Special Education Programs

Call 413.443.7171 ext. 336 to discuss adapting your programs for students with special needs.

WeeMuse Educator-Led Programming

Are your students under the age of 6? Many of our educator-led programs are also offered as WeeMuse programs, each specifically designed to meet the needs of early learners with a focus on language, sensory and physical motor development, critical thinking, and creativity. For more information, call 413.443.7171 ext.336.

Make Your Reservation Today