SchoolBus_MarioSánchezPrada school field trip ideas

© Mario Sánchez Prada


Each year, more than 1,600 schools visit the Academy on a field trip. School field trips are available for formal school groups bringing grades preK-12, including preschool, on a trip with their classroom teacher. Bring one class, or the entire grade!

Eligibility and Pricing

School field trip reservations are available for formal California school groups of students in grades pre-K through 12, including preschool.

  • To receive the school group rate, you must bring more than 10 people on your field trip, entering the building together at one time.
  • San Francisco school groups receive free admission.
  • For other California school groups, pricing is a flat rate of $11.25 per person, whether student or adult chaperone. We are proud to offer this heavily discounted admission prices to schools regardless of Title I status.
  • Eligibility for these free or discounted rates is at the discretion of the Academy, as subsidized admission is available thanks to generous annual donations to the Academy for All initiative.
  • Payment must be received in full at least two weeks prior to your visit date, although you may modify your headcount before submitting payment. We accept mailed checks or payment by credit card over the phone to 877-227-3311.
School groups are exempt from Health & Safety screening

Because many students are not yet eligible for vaccination, and because schools are subject to their own requirements based on their district or county, the Academy will not ask any adults or minors visiting as part of a school field trip to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination or booster shot to gain entrance to the museum.

Do note, however, that masks will continue to be required indoors for all guests ages 2 and up.

Eating and drinking is limited to the Academy's outdoor spaces. You'll find tables and chairs in the West and East Gardens. Because lunch storage is unavailable, we recommend that students carry lunches in their own backpacks.

Tips for Planning a Visit Date

Generally, field trips can be scheduled on most dates with the exception of holidays and school breaks.

Please note that the Rainforest exhibit is expected to be closed for annual maintenance on the following seven dates: February 1-3, 2022; May 17-18, 2022. If you attend on one of those dates, your students will not enter the Rainforest dome.

For additional planning tips and day-of resources, visit our Plan a Field Trip page.

Student Planetarium Shows

In lieu of student-centered shows delivered in the Morrison Planetarium at the museum, our astronomy educators will be running free online broadcasts for classrooms across California via our Distance Learning programs. You may register for any programs you’d like.

Thank you for your understanding as we work towards reopening safely with a limited museum staff. Should we have the ability to relaunch grade-appropriate dome shows for visiting school groups, our education team will be in touch with you as your field trip date approaches.

Seeking transportation scholarships?

Schools from the 9 Bay Area counties may be eligible for Transportation Funds from the Environmental Volunteers, Excursion Grants from Philanthropic Ventures Foundation, or free BART tickets through Yoots.

Schools from Oakland should check out the A to Z Fund.

Book a Field Trip

Visit dates for the 2021-2022 school year are now available.

Do you teach elementary school in San Francisco?

The Rock Fund Program is open to K-5 classes in the city of San Francisco. This unique opportunity includes free field trip programming and needs-based transportation scholarships.

We Thank Our Sponsors

The School & Youth Field Trips program is generously supported by an anonymous donor, BioMarin, Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation, the Hearst Endowed Fund for Science Education, Jacques M. Littlefield Foundation, and Koret Foundation. Additional support is provided by the Academy’s local business donors.

Biomarin and Koret Foundation logos.