Skip to Content

Education at the Smithsonian

As a user of the Smithsonian Learning Lab, you're supported by a vast network of information, resources, and experts designed to bring the excitement of discovery and creativity to every lesson you teach. Each of the museums and research centers within the Smithsonian offer learning resources specific to their collections or missions. Listed below, you'll find direct links to webpages of interest to educators and students.

Archives of American Art
With over 20 million items in its continually growing collections, the Archives is the world's largest and most widely used resource dedicated to collecting and preserving the papers and primary records of the visual arts in America.

Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage
The Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage is a research and educational unit of the Smithsonian Institution promoting the understanding and continuity of diverse, contemporary grassroots cultures in the United States and around the world.

Chandra X-Ray Observatory
NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory is a telescope specially designed to detect X-ray emission from very hot regions of the Universe such as exploded stars, clusters of galaxies, and matter around black holes. Because X-rays are absorbed by Earth's atmosphere, Chandra must orbit above it, up to an altitude of 139,000 km (86,500 mi) in space.

Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum
The only museum in the nation devoted exclusively to historic and contemporary design, the Cooper Hewitt presents compelling perspectives on the impact of design on daily life through exhibitions and educational programs on-site and online.

Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
Harvard University astronomers and Smithsonian Institution astronomers explore the cosmos together. The combination of the Harvard College Observatory and the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory is known as the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics.

Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden
The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden was conceived as the United States' museum of contemporary and modern art and currently focuses its collection-building and exhibition-planning mainly on the post–World War II period, with particular emphasis on art made during the last 50 years.

National Air and Space Museum
The National Air and Space Museum is one of the world's most popular museums. Its mission is to commemorate, educate, and inspire visitors by preserving and displaying aeronautical and spaceflight artifacts. The museum maintains the world's largest collection of historic aircraft and spacecraft. It is also a vital center for historical research on aviation and spaceflight and related science and technology, and home to the Center for Earth and Planetary Studies, which performs original research and outreach activities in planetary sciences.

National Museum of African American History and Culture
The National Museum of African American History and Culture will be a place where all Americans can learn about the richness and diversity of the African American experience, what it means to their lives and how it helped us shape this nation.

National Museum of African Art
The National Museum of African Art exhibits the finest examples of traditional and contemporary art from the entire continent of Africa.

National Museum of American History
The National Museum of American History empowers people to create a more just and compassionate future by exploring, preserving, and sharing the complexity of our past. We prepare the next generation for full participation in civic life through the exploration of U.S. History and development of critical thinking skills. Through our museum and our digital channels,we address the scientific, cultural, social, technological, and political development of the United States.

National Museum of Asian Art
The Freer Gallery of Art and the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery hold in trust the nation's extraordinary collections of Asian art and of American art of the late nineteenth-century aesthetic movement. Their mission is to encourage enjoyment and understanding of the arts of Asia and the cultures that produced them.

National Museum of Natural History
The Museum is dedicated to inspiring curiosity, discovery, and learning about the natural world, such as human origins, world cultures and ancient and modern mammals, through its unparalleled research, collections, exhibitions, and education outreach programs.

National Museum of the American Indian
A diverse and multifaceted cultural and educational enterprise, the National Museum of the American Indian cares for one of the world's most expansive collections of Native artifacts, including objects, photographs, archives, and media covering the entire Western Hemisphere, from the Arctic Circle to Tierra del Fuego.

National Portrait Gallery
The Gallery tells the stories of America through the individuals who have shaped our nation, from pre-colonial times to today, including poets and presidents, visionaries and villains, actors and activists.

National Postal Museum
The National Postal Museum is devoted to the history of America's mail service and the hobby of stamp collecting.

National Zoological Park
One of the world's best zoos is home to approximately 2,000 animals representing nearly 400 species, of which about a quarter are endangered, and provides leadership in animal care, science, education, and sustainability.

Smithsonian Affiliations
Smithsonian Affiliations is a national outreach program that develops long-term, collaborative partnerships with museums, educational, and cultural organizations to enrich communities with Smithsonian resources. There are hundreds of Smithsonian Affiliates throughout the United States, Puerto Rico and Panama.

Smithsonian American Art Museum
Artworks—including paintings, sculpture, photographs, folk art, and decorative arts from the colonial period to today—offer an unparalleled record of the American experience.

Smithsonian Anacostia Community Museum
Founded as the Anacostia Neighborhood Museum and opened in 1967, the Anacostia Community Museum examines, documents, and interprets the impact of historical and contemporary social issues on urban communities.

Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center
Smithsonian APA brings Asian Pacific American history, art and culture to you through innovative museum experiences and digital initiatives.

Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute
The Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute serves as an umbrella for the Smithsonian's global effort to conserve species and train future generations of conservationists.

Smithsonian Early Enrichment Center
The Smithsonian Early Enrichment Center is a model early childhood program that places children at the center of every experience. The vast collections are the foundation for the culturally diverse curriculum, which offers a rare opportunity for learning.

Smithsonian Environmental Research Center
The Smithsonian Environmental Research Center leads the nation in discovering the links between land and water ecosystems in the coastal zone. Researchers investigate questions related to fisheries, climate change, invasive species, mercury pollution, water quality, ozone depletion and more.

Smithsonian Gardens
The Smithsonian includes a number of outdoor museums, all of which were designed to complement the museums they border and to enhance the overall experience of learning, appreciation, and enjoyment.

Smithsonian Institution Archives
The Smithsonian Institution Archives captures, preserves, and makes available the history of the Smithsonian.

Smithsonian Institution Libraries
Through Smithsonian Institution Libraries 1.5 million printed books, manuscripts, periodicals, exhibition catalogs, and electronic versions of rare books and exhibitions are available.

Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service
SITES specializes in creating three dimensional, full-scale exhibition "packages" containing objects, images, and interpretive text.

Smithsonian Latino Center
The Center is not represented in one physical location; rather, it works collaboratively with the Institution's museums and research centers, ensuring that the contributions of the Latino community in the arts, history, national culture and scientific achievement are explored, presented, celebrated and preserved.

Smithsonian Science Education Center
SSEC seeks to transform the learning and teaching of science for all students in the United States and throughout the world through its science education leadership development services, professional development and outreach programs, and exemplary science instructional materials.

Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
The Smithsonian Tropical Research Institution in Panama is a bureau of the Smithsonian Institution based outside of the United States, and is dedicated to understanding biological diversity. STRI's facilities provide a unique opportunity for long-term ecological studies in the tropics, and are used extensively by some 900 visiting scientists from academic and research institutions in the United States and around the world every year.

The Smithsonian Associates
The Smithsonian Associates offers unparalleled access to the Smithsonian's world of knowledge through innovative and engaging programming that promotes learning, enrichment, and creativity for people of all ages.