Educational Resources

Rio Japurá, Brazil

The Field Museum has many student programs available for every age group. To learn more about educator workshops, student internships, and other opportunities, please see our Educator Programs. For information on events and activities for families, please visit our Family Programs page.


N.W. Harris Learning Center
Specimens and artifacts from the N. W. Harris Learning Collection at The Field Museum gives educators and parents the chance to take the Museum's collection to their classroom or home. With over 400 unique Exhibit Cases (mini-dioramas) and 70 Experience Boxes (hands-on kits) your options are endless! Take a look at just a few of the Exhibition & Experience boxes you can enjoy below:

Bird Exhibit Cases

Adult Birds Exhibit Case
Grade Level: Early Elementary, Elementary, Middle School, High School
Look closely at two versions of each of six bird species, then examine gender differences and molting patterns.

Birds' Nests Exhibit Case
Grade Level: Early Elementary, Elementary, Middle School, High School
Deconstruct the diverse workings of six different birds’ nests, from the Killdeer’s hollow in the ground to the elaborate basket-like structure of the Oriole.

Birds' Seasonal Coloration Exhibit Case
Grade Level: Early Elementary, Elementary, Middle School, High School
Discover the different molting patterns of several Chicago area birds, and see how brightly colored birds change hues in winter.

Bird Experience Boxes

A Good Egg Experience Box
Grade Level: Early Elementary, Elementary
Every animal begins life as an egg, which supplies the basic needs for development, nourishment and protection. The eggs of "egg layers" differ in unique ways that ensure their survival. Examine the eggs of snakes, birds, frogs and other animals up close to learn about their differences and how the habitats in which they are laid relate to their form and care.

Built for Flight Experience Box
Grade Level: Early Elementary, Elementary, Middle School
As expert fliers of the animal world, birds can fly farther and faster than any other animal. Their bodies are designed for it. Touch a bird's wing, compare the weight of bird and mammal bones, and investigate a bird's skeletal structure to understand how most birds are built for flight.

Beaks & Feet Experience Box
Grade Level: Elementary, Middle School, High School
This box includes skulls and feet from the ostrich, woodpecker, duck, hawk, and a surprising bird relative. The variation in their beaks and feet remind us that they are highly adapted to different food sources and environments. Learn about the process of natural selection, test out “eating” with a variety of imitation bird “beak” types, and create an evolutionary tree of life to show how the specimens in the box are genetically related.


Teens get to go behind the scenes at The Field Museum and interact with scientists, designers, researchers, and other teen volunteers like themselves to learn what it’s like to tromp through the forests of South America, design an exhibit from scratch, and create their own conservation videos.

For a complete listing and details about preparing for and scheduling student field trips, please view our Field Trip Programs page, where you can download our Student & Educator Program Catalog or sign up for field trips via our Illinois Online Registration Form or Out-of-State Online Registration Form.

Unless otherwise noted, student programs listed in this section are available Mondays, Thursdays, and Fridays at 10am or 11am. Maximum of 35 students for all programs.


PlayLab: Self-guided Exploration
Young adventurers have the chance to explore the Crown Family PlayLab! Students can put on an animal costume to crawl, hop, or fly! From digging up dinosaur bones to grinding corn in a Pueblo, little explorers can choose from an endless variety of activities that focus on exploring and understanding plants, animals, and cultures.
Meets ILS goals in English Language Arts, Science, Social Science, Fine Arts.
Program is free for pre-registration groups.

GRADES 6 - 12

Unraveling DNA
Investigate the fundamental principles of DNA and genetics while learning about the scientific research conducted at The Field Museum. Students will extract DNA in a lab and connect with real scientists in the DNA Discovery Center!
Meets ILS goals 11, 12, 13.

Renewable Energy Vehicle: From the Fryer to the Fuel Tank
To explore conservation themes, learn how diesel engines work and why they can run on used french fry oil! Students investigate viscosity and determine the best plant-based fuel for varying weather conditions. See the biodiesel go-kart zip around your school parking lot (space and weather permitting) and learn what it means to be “veggie- powered!”
Meets ILS goals 11, 12, 13.
Support for the Renewable Energy Vehicle provided by The Grainger Foundation. Sponsored by: Exelon Corporation.

Renewable Energy Vehicle: Runnin' on Sun
Using real fossil-fuel specimens, roleplay basic parts of a solar panel, then graph research results like solar researchers and engineers. Students examine the efficiency of their solar panel and attempt to improve it with various modifications. This class also includes performance of basic math functions to calculate potential energy and monetary savings from energy-efficient behavioral changes.
Meets ILS goals 11, 12, 13.

Support for the Renewable Energy Vehicle is provided by The Grainger Foundation. Sponsored by: Exelon Corporation. Additional support provided by Deutsche Bank Americas Foundation.