Field Trips

Whether at the museum or virtually, you will enjoy our field trips!

Guided Education Programs

Explore the Whaling Museum’s art, history, science, and culture content through a guided field trip with a Museum educator.

Guided programs are designed to comply with Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks and Common Core standards. Most programs can be adjusted to meet group needs, and the Education Department can work with you to customize your guided experience. Please read below for more information on available programs and to schedule your field trip.

At the Museum


Whales Today

Elementary/Middle (K-8)
Up to 60 students | 90 minutes
Offered on Tuesdays/Thursdays only

Whales, dolphins, and porpoises (cetaceans) are fascinating animals that have captured our attention for centuries. Through the use of real whale artifacts, hands-on teaching tools, and our magnificent skeletons, students will learn about these amazing animals and discover how we can help protect whales today.

Learning standards will be met as students:

  • Compare structures of related species
  • Examine adaptations that enable survival in a watery environment
  • Listen to audio files and see visual representations of sounds of different cetacean species
  • Discuss various ways that students can help protect whales today
Learn_Research Topics_Whaling History_Life Aboard_HERO

History on the Hill

Elementary/Middle/High (4-12)
Up to 60 students | 90 minutes
Offered on Tuesdays/Thursdays only

New Bedford has a deep and rich history. In this survey of the community, students will explore the indigenous people of New England, the first explorers and settlers, and the lives of whalers who contributed to New Bedford’s historically unique community. Students will also use mapping and interactive exhibits and artifacts to enhance their learning and understand the evolving southcoast region.

Learning standards will be met as students:

  • Recognize the diverse nature of the people who inhabited what came to be known as New Bedford and identify what groups contributed to its change and growth
  • Learn about the indigenous people of New England, European explorers, and early settlers and their relationship with each other and the land
  • Discover the daily lives of whalers on a whaling voyage and the products created by the whaling industry
  • Use maps to identify historic Native Peoples’ regions as well as European explorers and American whaling voyages

Squid Dissections

Elementary/Middle (3-5)
Up to 20 students | 60 minutes
Offered on Tuesdays/Wednesdays/Thursdays only

Students will discover the unusual adaptations of squid by investigating their external and internal anatomy. Students will be directly involved in locating and examining specific features of these important aquatic animals. They will learn the functions of these body parts and the role they play in daily activities and survival.

Learning standards will be met as students:

  • Examine internal structures, including those responsible for absorbing oxygen, circulation, and reproduction
  • Examine external structures, including those responsible for locomotion, catching prey, and evading predators
  • Create a food web that demonstrates the squid’s critical role as both predator and prey in the ocean ecosystem
  • Learn where squid and other cephalopods fit into the taxonomy of invertebrate organisms

Self-Guided Tour

Elementary/Middle/High (4-12)
Up to 80 students | 90 minutes recommended
Offered Tuesday - Friday only

Self-guided tours allow students to explore the museum at their own pace while discovering the museum’s many stories and unique objects. Self-guided tours also allow educators to highlight themes or topics being explored in their classrooms in personalized ways. The Museum’s Education Team is happy to work with you and your group to design your self-guided experience.