School Programs and Outreach

School programs focus on the power of art to promote critical thinking, creativity, and visual literacy skills.

Our gallery programs engage students in looking closely at art, connecting concepts to visual evidence, and analyzing results. Gallery discussion are enhanced by hands-on activities that extend engagement to active participation reinforcing comprehension of gallery topics.

We aim to foster the development of the four Cs of 21st-century learning: critical thinking, communication, collaboration, and creativity.

For questions about these FREE school programs, please contact Lisa Morrisette at or (513) 684-4520.

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Busing assistance is available upon request for schools with demonstrated need.


Select a focus from the list below, request a tour of a special exhibition, or contact us to customize your program. Schedule a visit!

Passport to Art 
for Grades 2–8
Get your passport ready! Take an imaginary trip around the world with artworks from all areas of the Museum’s collection. We provide the passport and you fill in your stories. If you are looking for a general overview—a “best of” the collection—this is the program for you. Through a variety of activities, students will engage with works from different countries, time periods, and media. (1½ hours—maximum 75 students)

House of Art
for Grades 2–4
From home to museum, learn about the history of this house and the people who lived here before it became a museum. We will meet them through their portraits, uncover their stories—and learn about the mystery of the Duncanson murals. Students will make a collage portrait of an imaginary person. This is an excellent program for introducing students to the Museum. The art activity teaches cutting and pasting skills and encourages imagination. (1½ hours—maximum 60 students)

Experience Painting
for Grades 2–8
Journey through landscapes, meet people in portraits, and discover the stories depicted in paintings on canvas, wooden panel, ceramic, and enamel. This program explores the grammar of art through an examination of the elements and principles of design, thus fostering skills of visual literacy. Students will make their own paintings. (2 hours—maximum 60 students)

Experience ArchitectureUnderstanding Space for
Grades 5–8
Practice spatial skills and identify architectural elements while exploring the Taft’s historic house. Learn how to read a floorplan and an elevation, and translate the two-dimensional
design into a three-dimensional model. The program starts outside the Museum, examining the structure and comparing it with surrounding buildings, so be prepared for the weather. (1½ hours—maximum 40 students)

Ohio “State of the Art”
for Grade 4
Get acquainted with the people who contributed to the development of the Ohio Valley through role-playing at a party hosted by Annie Taft. Tour the Museum and, through their portraits, meet the Tafts, who gave us this house and its artworks. Learn about some Ohio artists through their paintings. This program complements the 4th grade social studies curriculum focus on Ohio history. (1½ hours—maximum 40 students)

Enemies of Art: Temperature, Humidity, and Light
for Grades 
This visit, along with pre-visit exercises and experiments, investigates the science of preservation and the conservation of art. Students will learn about the effects of light and humidity on works of art of varying materials and what curators do to preserve them for future generations. (1½ hours—maximum 50 students)

Schedule a visit!


We take it on the road! For our special exhibitions we offer outreach programs designed to complement the exhibition and dig more deeply into the themes. Tailored to your grade level and interests! To customize a program, contact Lisa Morrisette at or (513) 684-4520.

Quilted Stories: Community and Culture
History and culture are present in each step of the quiltmaking process. While steeped in tradition, a quilt can also embrace invention. In this five-part outreach program we will work closely with your Art and/or ELA teacher(s) to explore the idea of community through the creation of a community quilt, and also through writing, by crafting a collection of quilt stories.

Tiffany Arts: Inspired by Nature
Challenge your students to design using organic forms. In this multi-visit program—we visit your school and your students visit the Taft—we will explore the natural forms that inspired Louis Comfort Tiffany.

Apple and Rectangle: Math and Art 
for Grade 4
Reinforce math skills with a Taft outreach experience and follow-up visit to the Taft Museum of Art.
In a pre-visit to your school, we’ll investigate concepts of area and perimeter through hands-on activities in a one-hour lesson. Follow up with a program at the Taft Museum of Art, where students will look closely at artworks to find the underlying geometric organization, then make their own geometric compositions in paper collage.

Schedule a visit!


Program Support Provided by:
Docents of the Taft Museum of Art
Charles H. Dater Foundation

Children’s Education Programs Generously Supported by:
Charles H. Dater Foundation


Joy and W.G. (Pete) Alpaugh Trust

School Tours Generously Supported by:

The P&G Fund of the Greater Cincinnati Foundation