For Teachers: Field Trip FAQ

School is back in session, and field trip booking season is upon us! We’ve been getting lots of questions about our field trip offerings, so we wanted to review some of the most common questions and provide some answers. Read on for details on what exactly an Academy field trip looks like, affordability, lessons that meet state standards and more.

Q: What can my students do on a field trip to the Academy of Natural Sciences?

A: Our science field trips offer you a range of educational and entertaining experiences. Take advantage of the reduced admission fees and, once inside, sample our self-guided exhibits! Your students can see a towering T. rex in our signature Dinosaur Hall, go for a fossil hunt in The Big Dig, travel all around the world through our historic dioramas, meet our furry, feathered and scaly live animals and interact with real specimens from our collections with one of our teacher naturalists. If you’re looking for a more tailored experience, we offer Discovery Lessons and enhanced exhibit experiences led by one of our staff.

Q: Does the Academy cater to certain grades or age groups of students? 

A: Most of the students attending our field trips are in grades pre-K-5, but there is truly something for everyone here at the Academy. In Dinosaur Hall, stroll beneath towering fossil skeletons, examine dinosaur anatomy up close, see real fossils being prepared and dig for dinosaur fossils in a setting straight out of the badlands. See lions, tigers and pandas up close in our dioramas, meet the Academy’s live animals and touch real specimens as you chat with Academy educators.

Field trips to the Academy of Natural Sciences may involve seeing a tortoise up close, like these two elementary school children.

Q: Are there special experiences just for students visiting the museum?

A: Enhanced exhibit experiences offer just the right combination of guided instruction and discovery-based learning with our excellent museum educators. In Outside In, students in grades pre-K-4 can experience the outdoors—inside! A tortoise, rabbit, legless lizard and hissing cockroach are just a few of the live animals that you might meet in our discovery center. Investigate different habitats, examine a real meteorite, search for fossil footprints, dig for shark teeth, watch a working beehive and more!

Kids of all ages can stroll among beautiful LIVE butterflies and moths from around the world in our year-round tropical garden. Watch colorful adults emerge from their pupae and discover other forms of metamorphosis.

Q: Do you offer lessons?

A: Your class can participate in a fun, in-depth investigation of the natural sciences! Through these interactive classroom experiences called Discovery Lessons, your students will practice important scientific skills, from making observations to designing experiments and interpreting data. Discovery Lessons take place in a museum classroom, with visits to exhibit areas as appropriate. All lessons have been developed to meet Educational Standards, including Pennsylvania State Standards and the Next Generation Science Standards.

Members Night at the Academy of Natural Sciences

Q: How can the Academy help me give my students a better education?

A: Did you know you can add lessons that meet state standards to your class field trip? Your students will practice important scientific skills, from making observations to designing experiments and interpreting data. Our Discovery Lessons have been developed to meet Educational Standards, including Pennsylvania State Standards and the Next Generation Science Standards.

Q: How do I schedule a field trip? 

  1. Check out our field trip planning guide
  2. Choose your preferred dates and experiences: Self-guided Visit or Enhanced Museum Experiences
  3. Call 215-299-1060 or register online to complete your reservation
  4. Check your mail or email in two to three weeks for a confirmation and schedule
  5. Book your bus and recruit your chaperones

Q: What if my school doesn’t have funds for field trips?

A: Financial support may be available. Call 215-299-1060 for details.

Q: What if I can’t afford the bus fees to bring my students to the museum?

A: We can come to you! Transform your classroom, auditorium or fair into an unforgettable natural science experience! Academy On the Go brings the excitement of a museum visit—complete with specimens, live animals and expert naturalists—right to you. Our structured lesson programs can be reserved for large or small groups and can be tailored to your age group or customized to your particular needs. Learn more or reserve by calling 215-299-1060!

To Book

We hope you’ll consider joining us for a field trip or scheduling an Academy on the Go outreach program this year! For more information on our offerings, please don’t hesitate to call 215-299-1060 or email us at

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