Over the last 10 years, September has become synonymous with Homeschool Days – that special month when museums throughout Maryland host educational events just for homeschool families.
We’ve rounded up 13 Maryland museums – plus a few in DC and Virgina – that are offering special discounts and programming to help you start your new school year off with a bang.
Baltimore Area Homeschool Days
Date: September 12 – 29
Time: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Ages: 6 to 14
Cost: Ranges $5.00 – $15.00 for students; $5.00 – $7.50 for chaperones.
Pick and choose science classes to fit your learning needs. You’ll find all kinds of options from hands-on learning labs to Science Zone activities, as well as IMAX, Planetarium, and Observatory programs. You choose and pay for the grade level and classes you want to attend. Basic admission to see just the exhibits costs $5. You must pre-registration as classes fill up quickly.
Date: September 12 – 14
Time: 9:00 AM – Noon
Ages: All ages
Cost: $15.00 per student per day; Each reservation includes ONE FREE chaperone. Additional chaperones are $27.95 per group.
Homeschool families will start their day with an auditorium program focusing on what types of mammals live in the ocean. Learn about the adaptations that help this diverse group of mammals survive in the ocean. After the program, families can enjoy a self-guided tour of the National Aquarium, with a learning passport in hand. Families will have the opportunity to visit hands-on discovery stations, which focus on marine mammals and their adaptations.
Throughout the Year at the National Aquarium in Baltimore
Two Mondays each month, from October to February, K-12 homeschoolers can participate in drop-off, 1-hour science classes at the Aquarium. Cost is $15 per student. Adults can wait outside the classroom or explore the Aquarium at their leisure during the class time.
Date: September 13
Time: 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM
Ages: 5 – 18
Cost: $10.00 per child; Free for parents
Celebrate Maryland’s Diversity. Maryland is home to a wide variety of different ethnic groups. Did you know that Baltimore once had a large and thriving German community? Or that Maryland was home to many important abolitionists and Civil Rights leaders? Come learn about these groups and more using primary sources, hands-on activities, and crafts. Participants are grouped by age and activities are adjusted for the different age ranges. Families are welcome to accompany registered students, with full access to our research library and museum, at no additional cost. A 30 minute lunch/ snack break is built into each program. Pre-registration is required. Free parking is available.
Throughout the Year at the Maryland Historical Society
Check out the Maryland Historical Society’s website for details about monthly homeschool programs that delve into statewide history topics.
Date: September 20
Time: 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Ages: 5 – 13
Cost: $8.00 per child; Parents admitted free
Sign up to participate in the Kids’ Cannery (3rd-8th Grade) or In the Neighborhood & City Builders (K-2nd Grade) programs.
Throughout the Year at the Baltimore Museum of Industry
January 10, 2018: History Alive Tour & Kids’ MotorWorks (2nd-8th Grade) programs. Also, every 3rd Thursday of the month, beginning in October, the BMI is hosting homeschool days in partnership with The Walters Art Museum. At the BMI, students will participate in 1 of 2 programs. Afternoon activities will take place at The Walters. Cost is $15 per child. Adult chaperone is free. Parents are responsible for transportation between the museums, as well as lunch for their children.
Throughout the Year at The Walters Art Museum
Date: Every 3rd Thursday, from October – May
Time: 1:15 PM – 3:30 PM
Ages: 5 – 12; Teen art workshop for 13 – 17
Cost: $15.00 for ages 5 – 12; and $9.00 for teens
Explore the Walters through workshops designed exclusively for homeschool students. Participants enjoy an introduction to the museum, a guided tour, studio activity, and post-visit materials.
Date: September 7, October 5, & November 2
Time: 2:30 AM – 4:00 PM
Ages: 6 -13
Cost: $30.00 per child per 3-week session
Fall Topics include: Navigation, Native Americans, Milling Era. Children ages 6 to 9 can sign up to attend classes on the first Friday of the month. Classes for children ages 9 to 13 are offered on the first Thursday of the month. Parents may attend class with their children. Siblings younger than 4 years old are welcome, but must be accompanied by a parent at all times. Pre-registration is required.
Throughout the Year at the Robinson Nature Center
Check the website for more details about dates for Winter Topics (Solar System, Comets & Meteors, & Geology) and Spring Topics (Vertebrates, Invertebrates, & Living Green). Classes run for 3-sessions on either the 1st Thursday or 1st Friday of the month.
Date: Fridays, September 1 – 29
Time: 10:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Ages: 2 – 10
Cost: $8.50 per person
Homeschoolers are invited to join in Freaky Friday Science Labs that feature different hands-on activities each week. When you visit Port Discovery, kids can also explore Wonders of Water, where they can build boats and fountains, and operate a boat lock; Adventures Expedition whey they search for a lost pharaoh’s tomb; and Climb KidWorks, a 3-story urban tree house. Pre-registration is required.
Date: September 5 – October 15
Time: 10:00 AM – 9:00 PM
Cost: FREE for Homeschool Parents; 50% off admission for up to 3 children
Enjoy all the odd attractions during Ripley’s Educator Appreciation Days. Homeschool parents will need to bring in something from the Board of Education or your local home school umbrella or your home school cooperative ID as proof of homeschooling.
Date: September 22
Time: 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM or 2:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Ages: 5 – 12
Cost: Check with the Maryland Zoo for pricing
Home school classes in Fall 2017 will take place on every other Friday beginning September 22. Cheetah Cub classes are for students in grades K-3, and Lion’s Pride classes are for students in grades 4-7.
Eastern Shore Area Homeschool Days
Date: September 21
Time: 10:30 AM – 1:00 PM
Ages: 5 – 12
Cost: $5.00 per child; Free for chaperones and siblings under the age of 5
Students will help construct a dugout canoe, learn about a time in which oysters lay thick as stones, explore the cabin of a skipjack, and investigate close-up the tiny critters that inhabit an oyster reef. Families can bring a bag lunch and picnic on campus, then explore CBMM’s exhibitions at their own pace as part of a Campus Challenge scavenger hunt.
Date: Tuesdays, September 5th – December 12th
Time: 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM
Ages: 7 – 14
Cost: $70.00 members; $85.00 non-members
Animals of the Arboretum (ages 7 to 10); From squirrels to skinks, foxes to finches, this program will use a hands-on approach to develop key scientific skills including observation, experimentation, and documentation. Scientific equipment will be part of the learning process. Forestkeepers (ages 11+): Homeschoolers will develop their science skills as they explore the field of forestry through hands-on outdoor experiences. Pre-registration is required.
Southern Maryland Area Homeschool Days
Date: September 14
Time: 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Ages: All ages
Cost: $6.00 members; $8.00 non-members; Chaperones Free
Colonial society was more complex than we might think. Master craftsmen passed on their expertise to new generations throughout Maryland’s early years. Now your student can become an apprentice and learn the trades of our ancestors. Pre-registration is required.
Throughout the Year at the Historic London Town
Once a month from October to April, homeschoolers can visit Historic London Town and participate in a hands-on living history activity.
Date: September 13
Time: 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Ages: 7 – 12
Cost: $15.00 per family when pre-registered; $5.00 per person at the door; Free for kids under 6
Visit 4 stations throughout the day and learn about life at Sotterley during the 1700’s. Using hands-on activities that illustrate work, interactive games, education, behavior, and food, students compare the lives of these colonial children to their own experiences while learning about the importance of pollinators. Students complete a craft to take home. While you’re at Sotterly, you can walk their nature trails and do some birdwatching.
Throughout the Year at the Sotterly Plantation
Check back with Sotterly Plantation for their annual Spring homeschool day.
Date: September 1
Time: 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM -or- 1:30 PM – 3:30 PM
Ages: 4 – 12; Teen Program
Cost: Free for members; $8.00 for nonmembers
Homeschool First Fridays is a series of environmental education programs. Each 2-hour program consists of indoor and outdoor hands-on learning. Depending on the topic, students may observe live animals, collect aquatic creatures, take measurements of water quality, or play games. Monthly Teen Homeschool Days offer activities from kayaking to orienteering. Pre-registration is required.
Throughout the Year at the Calvert Nature Society
Homeschool First Fridays and Teen Homeschool Days are scheduled monthly from September – June.
Washington DC Area Homeschool Days
Date: September 18 – October 23
Time: 10:30 AM – 12:45 PM
Cost: $180.00 for members; $225.00 for non-members
Savanna Sleuths is the first of five series in the 2017-2018 Zoo Homeschool curriculum exploring global biomes. Each series is a detailed exploration of a different major global biome, the ecosystems that define it and the animals that make it their home. Savanna Sleuths: Calling all Zoo detectives! Grab your binoculars and join us as we build our knowledge of scientific tools and methods by exploring the animals of the grasslands and savannas. This class will strengthen student familiarity with essential science equipment and basic wildlife forensic analysis. Classes for ages 5-9 meet on Mondays. Classes for ages 7-12 meet on Thursdays from 10:00 – noon. oo 101: Collection Planning is a drop-off program for ages 11-14.
Throughout the Year at the National Zoo
Visit the National Zoo’s website for details on other homeschool class series they are hosting throughout the year.
NBM’s website is not updated, yet; but check out their awesome annual homeschool programs.
Virginia Area Homeschool Days
Date: September 9 – 24
Time: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Cost: $8.00 per child; $10.00 per adult
During Homeschool Days, students and their families can enjoy hands-on activities and revolutionary experiences designed to make colonial dramas come to life in a way that is educational and interactive. The ticket provides admission to the exhibition buildings, colonial trade shops, and colonial homes. They also include admission to the Governor’s Palace and museums (Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum, DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum, and Bassett Hall.) Pre-registration is required. Proof of homeschooling is required at entry.
Throughout the Year at Colonial Williamsburg
Check the website Spring homeschool event dates.
Date: September 9 – 24
Time: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Cost: $12.00 per family member
Program includes admission to Jamestown Settlement, including the introductory film 1607: A Nation Takes Root, permanent exhibition galleries, including “Pocahontas Imagined” special exhibition, replica 1607 ships, re-created Powhatan Indian village, and 1610-1614 colonial fort; and to the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown, including Revolution-themed films, permanent exhibition galleries and “AfterWARd: The Revolutionary Veterans Who Built America” special exhibition, re-created Continental Army encampment and 18th-century Revolution-era farm, along with classroom and special activities. Pre-registration is required.