K-12 Group Tours

In a group experience, you will reflect, discuss, and learn together about culture and our world. 

Planning a K-12 Group Tour at UMMA

Tour requests are accepted on a rolling basis, the suggested deadline for Fall 2023 tours is Monday, October 2, 2023, and the suggested deadline for Winter/Spring 2024 tours is Monday, December 4, 2023.

Number of Students per Tour: One classroom (approx. 25-30 students) 

Chaperones: For K-5 tours, please provide 1 chaperone per 6 students. Adults may find it helpful to have gallery maps and parking information, found on UMMA’s Plan Your Visit page

Self-Guided: You are welcome to visit during open hours. Letting us know of your visit in advance allows us to see if other groups also plan to use the galleries at the same time. Assigning one chaperone per small group is recommended. 

Guided: Experienced volunteer docents will lead students and chaperones on a thematic tour.

Guided Tour Description: Students will engage with approximately 4 works of art related to a theme. Objects will be selected from a variety of exhibitions. Discussion will focus on artistic process and materials as well as connecting art to personal experience, current events, and classroom content. An emphasis will be placed on how art can advance equity and justice.

Tour Themes: 

  • How We Express Ourselves: Identity, Creativity, and Persuasion
  • How the World Works: Systems, Processes, and Materials
  • Sharing the Planet: Sustainability and the Environment
  1. Complete the online K-12 Group Tour Request form below, listing your preferred dates and start times. If you would like to apply for bus funds, please indicate that on the request form. 
  2. You will receive an automatic reply that your tour request has been submitted.
  3. UMMA staff will manually schedule your visit. We will do our best to honor your preferred date. Priority will be given to schools without a full-time art program, those in which at least 50% of students qualify for free or reduced lunch, and those visiting UMMA for the first time.
  4. You will receive a personalized email confirmation that includes detailed preparation information. If you have applied for bus funds, you will be notified about the process.
  5. Two weeks prior to your tour, we will ask you to confirm that all details for your class visit are correct. 
  6. Please contact Grace VanderVliet ( if your plans change.

Make nametags: Provide each student with a bold nametag prior to arrival to help the transition run smoothly. We will have extra on hand. 

Create small groups: Please divide your class into four groups. Each group will most likely have around 5-7 students in it. You know your students and which pairings will be most successful. If you aren’t able to choose small groups in advance, the Docent Guides will do this at the beginning of the tour. 

Communicate Accommodations: ASL and cart services available with at least two weeks notice. Please reach out about amplification, translators, or individual aides.  

Plan Lunch and Snacks: UMMA does not have a dedicated lunch space for K-12 tours. The Michigan Union across the street offers fast food options, and many restaurants are located on South University or State Street. If the weather is nice (fingers crossed in Michigan!), students could eat outside on benches on the diag near Hatcher Graduate Library. 

Take COVID Precautions: Per U-M policies, masks are optional indoors. 

Review Museum Guidelines: 

  • Art is special. Please protect it by looking and not touching. 
  • Galleries and restrooms are accessible by wheelchair and strollers. Wheelchairs are available.
  • All-gender restrooms available on Floor 2. Changing tables available on Lower Level.
  • To protect the art, no food or drink are allowed in the galleries. 
  • We will provide tour supplies (pencils, paper), so backpacks should be left on the bus.
  • Photography is allowed. No flash or video please. We encourage students to be fully engaged without phones during tour discussion. 

Please arrive 10 minutes early to allow for bathroom breaks and hanging jackets. 

School Bus: Please share this drop off location map with your bus driver. It is not safe to unload on State Street, which is where they will drop off if they program the address into GPS. Buses may not park at this location during the tour. Please proceed south on State Street to Briarwood Mall parking lot and then return when the visit concludes to pick up at the same location on South University Street. 

AATA Public Bus: Routes 4, 5, and 6 drop off in front of the museum. To ensure accurate up-to-date maps and routes, please consult The Ride website and plan your trip. 

Entrance Procedure: Enter through the accessible door next to the large white head sculpture (Behind the Walls, by Jaume Plensa). You will find a check-in desk and lobby area by the Museum Shop. Restrooms are on the Lower Level.

Busing costs are covered by UMMA for qualifying visits, submit a tour request to find out more. 

K-12 Group Tour Request Form

1 Start 2 Part Two 3 Part Three 4 Complete

Thank you for your interest in visiting UMMA for your K-12 field trip. Please contact Grace VanderVliet ( with questions about K-12 experiences. 


Bus grants available! UMMA will reimburse transportation funds for qualifying visits. Submit a tour request to find out more!

Virtual Field Trips

Can't make it to the museum? Looking for more ways to connect your classroom to UMMA's collection?

Take a tour of UMMA’s galleries and objects, narrated by UMMA staff and volunteer educators.

Subscribe to UMMA's K-12 Newsletter

Sign up for monthly newsletters featuring instructional materials and creative activities. 


Programs for K-12 students and educators are generously supported by Michigan Medicine and the Kiwanis Club of Ann Arbor Foundation.

UMMA - Feel Free. New Look. New Website. New Experience. Coming January 2024.

Feel Informed.

Sign up for updates.