Guidelines for School Visits

Guidelines for All Museum Visits

The Monterey Museum of Art is pleased to offer free visits to all public schools. Discover the Museum through programs created with your curriculum and students’ developmental needs in mind. Museum Educators engage students in active discussions about the works they see using strategies to develop students’ visual thinking.

What will we see?
In everyday life we develop the habit of looking quickly, gaining the most basic information and then moving on. But it takes time to see a work of art, and an extended engagement with an object can be both rewarding and fun. At the Monterey Museum of Art, gallery programs focus on a limited number of carefully selected objects rather than visiting every exhibition in the Museum. After the gallery visit program we encourage teachers and chaperones to spend extra time with students in the galleries visiting art works and other exhibitions not covered in the lesson.


When can we visit?

  • School visit programs are available Monday-Friday, from 10am-12pm, and 1pm-3pm.
  • Weekend visits may be arranged.

How many students can I bring?

  • To provide the best experience, guided tours can accommodate up to 35 students per group. 
  • Larger groups may schedule a self-guided tour.

How long are School Visits?

  • Guided tours are 2 hours.
  • California Paintings tour may be extended to 2.5 hours with the addition of a visit to Colton Hall.

What about chaperones?

  • We love chaperones! The Museum requires one adult chaperone (non-student over age 18) per ten students, and there is no limit to the amount of chaperones each class may bring.
  • Chaperones must remain with the group during the entire program and accept responsibility for monitoring the group’s behavior.

How much does it cost?

  • School visits are free!

How can I sign up?

  • Please fill out the Tour Request Form to choose the curriculum and date you wish to visit.
  • Plan early for best availability as MMA programs fill very quickly. We make every effort to accommodate your first preference, but we cannot guarantee availability.

Bus Funding

  • Bus funding is available for Monterey County Public Schools, thanks to generous grant support!


  • If you must cancel, please email us as soon as possible at [email protected]. Prompt notification may enable another group to schedule a program.

What do I need to know before the Museum visit?

  • Previewing the Museum is recommended to help you prepare for your visit. MMA Pacific Street is open Thursday-Monday 11:00 am – 5:00 pm, or until 8:00 pm on the first Friday of the month. Bring a copy of your Visit Confirmation for free admission for one visitor.
  • One chaperone (non-student over age 18) per ten students is required.
  • Review guidelines for Mastering the Museum with your students. See below.

Master the Museum!

Please review these guidelines with your students and chaperones prior to your visit.

  • Experience art with your eyes and minds, not your hands.
  • Please avoid pointing at artwork; accidents happen.
  • Be curious! Ask lots of questions.
  • Chaperones must remain with students at all times.
  • Please note the Museum has no indoor lunch facilities, however the sculpture garden outside the Museum and the park across the street from the Museum in front of Colton Hall are excellent spaces for lunch.

Print these guidelines.

What do we do when we arrive at the Museum?

  • Please arrive 15 minutes before scheduled start of program (allow time for traffic and parking).
  • Buses may drop students off in front of the Museum at 559 Pacific Street.
  • Chaperones must remain with the group during the entire visit and accept responsibility for encouraging the group to explore the Museum, and for monitoring the group’s behavior.
  • If possible, please leave backpacks, lunches, and water bottles on the bus. MMA is not responsible for items damaged, lost or stolen.

After Your Visit
Students have more meaningful field trips when they discuss their experiences before and after the visit. Our 20 minute post-visit reflection activity, “I Went to the Monterey Museum of Art and…” helps you continue the conversation that we started in the galleries.

Below is a link to our School Visit Program survey. Please note that there are questions in the survey regarding the Museum’s post-visit activities. Please complete and submit our School Visit Program survey at your earliest convenience, as it is vital for our reporting to grant organizations throughout the year. Our ability to receive grants so that we can provide classrooms with bus funding to visit the Museum is contingent upon providing reports to granting organizations, and your feedback is very important. Thank you for your visit, and we hope you will join us at the Museum again soon!

Please click the link below to complete the survey:

School Visit Survey Link