Our museums and archives are temporarily closed to support the effort to contain the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

School Programs: The San Diego History Center

Stories of San Diego explores the rich heritage of San Diego

This program offers a comprehensive exploration of San Diego’s early beginnings. Through the examination of artifacts, works of art, historic photographs and our interactive Walk-on Map, the past comes alive and students discover how the history of San Diego is reflected in our culture today. Student investigations focus on the role that human-environment interactions played in San Diego’s development, contributions of the diverse peoples that settled here and the main events and personalities that have shaped San Diego.

To make a reservation: Program Request

Mapping Balboa Park introduces students to geography and mapping skills:

Exploring the buildings and features from the 1915 Expo that form the foundation of the modern park, students will utilize cartography, navigation, and spatial awareness skills as they learn about Balboa Park “then and now” during this 1-1.5 hour guided tour through Balboa Park. Smartphones are encouraged, but not required.

To make a reservation: Program Request

School Programs:  Junípero Serra Museum in Presidio Park

San Diego Before Statehood takes students through early changes in our community.

Journey back in time and tread in the footsteps of the padres, soldiers and settlers who established the first mission and presidio in Alta California. Through a combination of museum educator/docent-facilitated or teacher-led activities, explore a section of Presidio Park, learning about the plaza, stables, jail, chapel and commander’s house that lie protected underground today. Inside the Serra Museum, investigate artifacts that reveal the daily life of the Kumeyaay, the Spanish and the Mexican inhabitants of early California. “Meet” real historic figures by dressing in costume as Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, Father Junípero Serra, Guillermo Carrillo, Señorita Pico, and Josefa Carillo de Fitch, all important leaders in the early years of the city.

San Diego Before Statehood (pdf)

Research Archives Programs: The San Diego History Center

The History Center’s Research Archives houses our extensive collections that document the people, places and stories of San Diego. Two programs are available:

Introduction to Historical Research:

Students receive an introduction to the collections and an orientation on how to use the Research Archives by our trained Archivists.

Research Visit:

Students receive guidance with specific research materials for class projects, led by our Archivists

 K-12 Self-Guided Tours: The San Diego History Center or the Junípero Serra Museum

To make a reservation for a self-guided tour at either site: Self-Guided Tour Reservation


To make a reservation: Program Request
For reservation questions or more information: 619-232-6203 x 130 or k12programs@sandiegohistory.org
NOTE: Reservation fees must be received within two weeks of scheduled visit to hold your date. Confirmation letters are sent upon payment receipt.
Fees: $7/student; free admission for chaperones up to 8:1 ratio
Title I schools: $4/student reduced fee; free admission for chaperones up to 8:1 ratio
Program Schedule: Monday – Friday, 9:30-11:30 am

NOTE: The Junípero Serra Museum is currently not ADA accessible