Resources for K-12 Educators

For School Visits

Field Trip Experiences

During the 2015-16 school year, local educators paired up with museum curators, docents, and teaching artists to create themed Field Trip Experiences. They include downloadable pre- and post-visit activities for your classroom, an hour-long museum tour and an hour-long studio workshop during your visit. These experiences were developed based on their connection to the Museum’s collection, classroom curriculum, and Maine State Learning Results.

Book your free Field Trip Experience at the Colby College Museum of Art to make your classroom curriculum come to life!

Field Trip Experience Pre- and Post-visit Activities (listed in red below):


Field Trip Experience Tour Summaries

  • Every Picture Tells A Story – Students in grades K-3 will see that the elements of a good story are not just confined to the pages of literature, but can also found in the shapes, lines, colors, people, and objects in works of art.
  • The Maine Experience – Students in grades 4-5 will examine Maine landscapes in order to understand what natural, human, and capital resources are found there and how these resources determine the industries in our state.
  • Geography & The Environment – Students in grades 6-8 will investigate various representations of nature, the environment, and the land to better understand how and why artists interact with, and interpret, the world around us.
  • Civil War & Emancipation – Students in grades 6-8 will explore artworks from before, during, and after the Civil War to identify examples of symbolism used to communicate artists’ perceptions of race relations and segregation in the United States.
  • Isolation & Community – Students in grades 9-12 will view artworks across various artistic movements and mediums that represent images of alienation or togetherness, in order to reflect upon their own understanding of “us” vs. “them.”


Field Trip Experience Studio Workshops

  • Every Picture Tells A Story “Flat Stanley” workshop – Students in grades K-3 will make a tiny two-dimensional version of themselves that they can hold up in front of paintings, to “put themselves in the picture.”
  • The Maine Experience Watercolor Collage workshop – Students in grades 4-5 will make a watercolor collage postcard of their favorite Maine scene, inspired by the work of Maine artist, Alex Katz.
  • Geography & The Environment Printmaking workshop – Students in grades 6-8 will learn how to make a scientific illustration of a natural object onto a styrofoam plate so they can create their own original prints.
  • Civil War & Emancipation Assemblage workshop – Students in grades 6-8 will make an “injustice” themed assemblage box using a variety of two and three dimensional materials, inspired by the work of artist, Betye Saar.
  • Isolation & Community “Ada Vanes” workshop – Students in grades 9-12 will make a two-dimensional cardboard portrait, similar to the Katz weathervane in front of the museum.

For Educators

Educator Evenings

K-12 Educators are invited to learn about artworks in the Museum’s collection and how to incorporate them into the classroom. Those attending will receive contact hours for certification. Refreshments will be served.

Educator Evenings to resume Spring 2018

Third Thursday of every month, 4–6 pm

Educator Advisory Board

The Educator Advisory Board is a group of local educators chosen to meet monthly to discuss ways to engage Maine’s students and teachers at the Museum. They are charged with collaboratively designing and developing tours, activities, curriculum, programs, and evaluation for school visits and teacher professional development. The annual stipend for teachers on the board is $1000. Applications (a resume, letter of interest, and 2-3 references) will be accepted September 1–30, 2017. Please email to apply.

Goals for the EAB are as follows:

  • To have local educators work collaboratively with museum curators, docents, and teaching artists to develop relevant resources and programs for K-12 students and teachers.
  • To develop collegial working relations with other educators who are interested in using art objects in curriculum and instruction.
  • To develop knowledge about and advocacy for the K-12 educational programing and resources available at the Colby College Museum of Art.
  • To develop professional skills and leadership among members of the board.

Lesson Plans

The following classroom lesson plans are for teachers who are planning a trip to the Museum. They examine objects and themes in the museum collection, and can be used in a classroom or Museum setting.