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NMAI Washington DC School Group Reservations

The National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI) is glad you are planning to visit the museum in Washington, D.C.

Please review the information below to help plan your visit:
  • Requests for reservations can be made by completing and submitting this online form. Upon successful submission of the form, an acknowledgement email will be sent to you. NMAI staff will follow-up with you to let you know whether or not your request can be accommodated. If your request can be accommodated a confirmation letter will be sent to you.   
  • Please note that the Smithsonian Institution has implemented full security screening at all of its museums. Groups should plan on arriving 15 minutes early. One adult chaperone is required for every five students for grades Preschool through 3. One adult chaperone is required for every ten students for grades 4 through 12.
Information Needed to Submit a Request: 
  1. The contact information for the person submitting the form as well as for the person who will be accompanying the group (if different);
  2. The school/group's contact information;
  3. The total number of students by grade;
  4. Total number of chaperones and others;
  5. Up to two date and time options and the type of reservation being requested (e.g., self-guide/entry only, imagiNATIONS Activity Center or one of four guided thematic programs).

You may choose from the following three registration options to plan your visit to the museum:  

1. Self-Guided Museum Entry
The museum is open for general entry to the public every day of the year except December 25 from 10:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Due to the large number of groups entering the museum, all groups of ten or more are strongly encouraged to register for entry. Reservations can be requested for entry for any day of the week starting at 10:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. 

2. imagiNATIONS Activity Center (IAC) for grades preschool - 3
Reservations can be requested for preschool through 3rd grade groups for entry into the imagiNATIONS Activity Center on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays in 30-minute increments (i.e., 10-10:30 a.m.; 10:30-11:00 a.m., etc.). Groups are limited to 30 students per half hour.

3. Guided Programs for grades 4 - 12
The National Museum of the American Indian is excited to offer four guided thematic programs for students grade 4 - 12. The programs are 60 minutes long and are available Monday through Friday at 10:15 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. by reservation. A total of 60 students may be registered per time slot. Descriptions of the thematic programs can be found below.

Please make sure your request is:
1. Is on a Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday or Friday for the imagiNATIONS Activity Center.
2. Is is on a weekday (Monday to Friday) between Tuesday, September 5, 2017 and Friday, June 1, 2018 for a guided program.

National Museum of the American Indian 2017-2018 Guided Programs for Grades 4 - 12 in Washington, DC:

Program Themes

Nation to Nation Exhibition Guided Program
The Great Law of Peace: Haudenosaunee Diplomacy
Adaptable to grades 4–12
American Indians devised and have always lived under a variety of sophisticated systems of government. Based on treaties, laws, and court decisions, these tribal governments operate as sovereign nations within the United States today. This interactive program focuses on the history and contemporary identity of the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) Confederacy. In exploring the confederacy’s governmental structure, its material culture, and its relationship with the United States (both past and present), students will gain a broad understanding of how the Haudenosaunee have created, interacted with, and changed structures of power, authority, and governance.

Americans Exhibition Guided Program
Adaptable to grades 4–12

1. Powerful Images, Powerful Words
Tomahawk missile, Land O’Lakes Butter maiden, Jeep Cherokee, Big Chief writing tablet—names and images of Indians are everywhere in American life. Why? Students will explore the ways in which Indian names and images—both historical and contemporary—continue to shape how we think about American Indians. The program will focus specifically on how contemporary images of Pocahontas and the Plains Indian warrior can provide new understandings of familiar events in American history.

2. Influence, Leadership, and Authority
Federal policies regarding American Indians, such as the Indian Removal Act of 1830, have been the result of major national debate. Students will have the opportunity to examine how the dynamics of leadership, influence, and authority have played an important role in key moments of American history. Students will discuss how the decisions leaders make continue to shape America's relationship with tribal nations.

3. Telling the American Story
The American story is profoundly shaped by American Indian history, yet the stories told about American Indians are often false and almost always incomplete. Listening to and telling stories are ways we acquire information and relay our values. By experiencing stories about the first Thanksgiving, Pocahontas, and the Battle of Little Bighorn, students will reflect on what makes a good story, why it matters who tells the story, and how the way stories are shared determines what we remember. This interactive program will explore possibilities for retelling stories and remedying myths about American Indians.

School programs for the Americans exhibition are made possible through the generous support of the Smithsonian Women's Committee.
To proceed, please follow the instructions provided below:
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