African Art On the Go!
Monday–Friday, 8:30–4 p.m. by appointment
45 min.–1 hour
Minimum 15–maximum 30 participants
Please submit your request at least 3 weeks in advance using the online form at africa.si.edu/education/go. (If you are unable to submit the form online, print and fax the form to 202.357.4879 ATTN: Michelle Edwards.)
Museum representatives travel to classrooms within a 20-mile radius to introduce students to a variety of African arts. A hands-on experience featuring the museum’s teaching collection, this is an opportunity to learn about the arts of Africa through distinct cultural traditions. See available themes below to select the program that will fit best with your curriculum. If requested, representatives can bring touchable objects from the museum’s teaching collection to your school classroom. Additional hands-on activities may vary. Some program may require an overhead projector and screen. All outreach activities are FREE of charge. All outreach programs are FREE of charge.
- Pre-registration is required for all African Art on the Go! programs. You are not registered until you receive a confirmation of your request from the museum.
- Submitting a form does not guarantee a reservation. Programs are scheduled on a first-come, first-served basis. (Please note that our programs are especially popular during February, Black History Month.)
- Any cancellations must be made by email to EdwardsMI@si.edu no less than one week prior to your scheduled program.
Available ThemesDaily Life and Personal Adornment
The Teaching Collection
Our educational Teaching Collection can be a part of your classroom! Our one-of-a-kind lending library of objects offers truly hands-on experiences. Since its inception, access to touchable and teachable art objects has been an important tool to supplement the mission of this museum. Founded by Warren M. Robbins, the National Museum of African Art began as a private educational institution in 1964 with the inaugural vision to promote cross-cultural understanding through its collections and programs.
The museum’s teaching collection represents the diverse arts of Africa with more than 1,000 objects, acquired through purchase, gifts from private collectors, former Peace Corps members, former and visiting ambassadors, and de-accessions from the permanent collection. Today, the teaching collection features strong holdings in carved masks; hand-woven, stamped, factory-printed, and dyed textiles; musical instruments; woven baskets alongside weaving implements; currency; stools; headrests; jewelry and adornments; and more.
The teaching collection has aspired to be a unique lending library of objects for use by its curatorial, education, and docent teams. The African Art on the Go! program is one way we are sharing this collection with an ever-broader audience and continuing Warren Robbins’s enduring educational vision for the museum. For more information about how to integrate this unique resource into your classroom, email us at NMAfAEducation@si.edu.