School Programs

four elementary school children seated at a table, gluing strips of colored paper onto posterboard.

Design Field Trips

This 90-minute program includes an exhibition tour and hands-on workshop. On the tour students will explore 5-6 objects and in the workshop will do a design focused activity. Teachers will select from current offerings to decide which program they would like to focus on during their field trip.

Current exhibition offerings

Tools: Extending Our Reach
January 12 – May 25, 2015:
Students will engage with objects from Cooper Hewitt and nine other Smithsonian collections, spanning 1.85 million years of tool use and design. Students will explore the various ways that tools extend humanity’s ability to do everything from completing everyday tasks to being able to do the extraordinary, such as printing parts from a 3D printer in space! During the workshop students will design tools of survival.

Beautiful Users
January 12 – April 26, 2015:
This inaugural exhibition focuses on the design process and welcoming students to learn about the significant role of the user in design. They will critically explore everyday examples of products, spaces, and interfaces to understand how many designers today are changing their point of view from designing for people to designing with people. During the workshop students will construct their own design that fits the need of a user based on a unique scenario.

Fees

New York City Schools (includes private, public, and charter schools in the five boroughs)
• FREE includes admission and all materials.
• Minimum of 15 and maximum of 30 students.
• We require 1 chaperone for every 10 students. Maximum of 4 chaperones including classroom teacher.

Outside of New York City
• $400.00 includes admission and all materials.
• Minimum of 15 and maximum of 30 students
• We require 1 chaperone for every 10 students. Maximum of 4 chaperones including classroom teacher.

Registration

Sign up will be available on this website beginning Monday, November 3rd. Come back to this webpage at that time to register.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How long is the program?
Each Design Field Trip is 90-minutes long.

2. What do the students do in the program?
The program includes an exhibition tour and hands-on workshop. When you register you select which exhibition you want to focus on. On the tour students will explore 5-6 objects and in the workshop will do a design focused activity.

3. Can I register for more than one class to visit?
You may request to schedule up to two groups for the same time slot. Both groups will get the full program with one beginning with the tour and other with the workshop. Up to thirty students per group; smaller classes may not be combined to form a larger group of over thirty participants.

4. How far in advance do I have to register?
Registration must be made six weeks in advance. We only take weekday reservations.

5. What information do I need to have when registering?
a) School and mailing address
b) Teacher name(s) and grade
c) School and teacher contact information (e.g., school phone, cell phone, e-mail address).
d) Number of classes and students (up to thirty students per group; smaller classes may not be combined to form a larger group of over thirty participants).
e) Number of chaperones (up to four chaperones per class; a minimum of one adult per ten students).

6. What happens after I submit my reservation request?
After you submit a reservation request it will be reviewed within 5 business days. Please note that a confirmation email will be sent to you confirming the program date and start time.

7. Can my class stay in the Museum after my guided visit?
Yes, upon arrival your class will receive entrance tickets and may come and go freely for the rest of the day. We recommend chaperones and students to divide themselves into smaller groups as large groups cannot be accommodated in the Galleries at the same time. Also, your class may not enter Cooper Hewitt early before your designated tour start time.

8. Where can I eat my lunch?
Unfortunately, Cooper Hewitt doesn’t have lunchroom facilities for students so you will be responsible for finding a place to eat. Please note we do not have a place to store your lunch and food is not allowed in the galleries.

9. Where do I check in?
Arrive ten minutes before your scheduled start time to check-in (we cannot attend to you if you arrive sooner). Enter the museum on 91st street between Fifth and Madison avenues. The Design Educator assigned to your program will greet you at the entrance.

10. What should my students bring?
Students don’t need to bring anything; we’ll provide all necessary supplies. Students will check their belongings when they arrive, so they should not bring any valuables to their Cooper Hewitt visit.

11. What if we’re late?
If your group is late, your program will be shorted accordingly, and finish at the originally designated time. Groups more than thirty minutes late will be canceled.

12. What if I need to cancel my tour?
All cancellations must be received in writing at least two weeks prior to the scheduled visit. Please review our full cancellation policy on your confirmation letter and contact School Programs at chtours2@si.edu or (212) 849-8351 with any questions. Cancellation and other processing fees may apply.