Schools & Educators

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K-12 School Tour Program

Telling Our Story – Exploring the History of Warren County

Bring your students for an interactive history experience exploring the ways Warren County’s people built a community from an untamed wilderness. 

Spring: April 22 - May 31

Fall: September 10 - November 8

Who Should Attend?  Any K-12 class with at least 12 students in one grade. 

What programs are available for younger students? Teachers may choose from the four different programs listed below designed for second grade through sixth. These tours feature activities and other hands on learning experiences.

children on a tour
School Children Exploring the Six Simple Machine Exhibit

How Things Have Changed Around the House - focuses on how things have changed in our day to day lives.  The tour is more interactive then before including a scavenger hunt on the Village Green to learn about how things have changed in the world of commerce, a visit to the Butterworth cabin for hands on learning of how things have changed around the house in pioneer times, a visit to the Victorian Gallery to see how things have changed from the farm to the city with an interactive program on how clothing has changed (reviewing mannequins dressed as farmer and city person).

 Students wrap up their tour back at the Village Green with an exercise where each child writes or draws a postcard about their favorite thing at Harmon Museum with the idea that Harmon Museum staff will mail the postcards back to the school to receive in the classroom.  Teachers can use the postcards to review the trip and reinforce the “how things have changed” theme. 

How Things Have Changed in How We Communicate - begins with the Native Americans and their oral traditions and progresses through early newspapers, the development of the postal system (students write or draw a postcard which WCHS will send through the mail to the school), telegraph, telephone, radio, television etc.  We explore the impact of how we have communicated through time through new technologies and inventions as well as innovations in transportation.  Students get hands on with old telephones, telegraph, type face for newspapers, typewriters and early radios. We end the tour with a discussion of today’s personal communications through cell phones and tweets.  Students are given a newspaper mockup with spaces for stickers they collect as we tour. At the end of the tour we review a time-line banner references the “newspapers with stickers” in the discussion.

Social Studies Backpack – How do you build a community out of a wilderness?  Social Studies backpack is an activity based program that engages students with historic artifacts, paintings, music and historic documents chronicling the development of Ohio. 

Gruesome but Truesome – Get up close and personal with practices that were common and ordinary in the 19th & early 20th century which we find gruesome or down right horrifying today. 

Exploring Pioneer Technology – Discover how work gets accomplished without the help of power tools using the six simple machines and other forms of 19th and early 20th century technology. 

Following the Tracks of the Underground Railroad – Ohio was a major center of activity on the Underground Railroad.  Warren County was actively helping slaves to escape as early as the 1820’s. 

What programs are available for older students? Teachers may choose from one of three programs designed to help develop critical thinking skills. 

Harmon Museum History Detective – Students in groups of five or less are given a box of artifacts, letters, photos and other memorabilia and told to find and tell the box’s story. Allow two hours. 

My Virtual History Museum – Using smart phones, tablets and other cameras students develop a virtual museum experience which can be accessed digitally. Choose from suggested topics or come up with your own. 

All Art is Local- Explore the fine arts collection at the Harmon Museum & Art Gallery.

When are the school tours offered? Two sessions are available each day Tuesday-Friday. Choose mornings from 10:00 am to noon or afternoons from 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm. 

Where are the tours held? Tours are presented inside the Harmon Museum & Art Gallery at 105 S. Broadway in downtown Lebanon, Ohio. 

Why should our school visit the Harmon Museum & Art Gallery? Warren County was one of the most influential counties in the formation of Ohio and the country as a whole. Many of our most prominent pioneers were known not only for their good works at home but also their contributions on the national scene. Their stories, which will entertain educate and inspire people of all ages, are contained in the Harmon Museum. 

How do you sign up to bring a class to the Harmon Museum? Call 513-932-1817 or email Reservations are required and tours will be booked on a "first come, first serve" basis. 

Additional Information: The Warren County Commissioners have declined to provide a grant for school tours this year, so we cannot offer free tours or any bus help.  We are a private non-profit historical society and by State law the commissioners can give funds for programs but they declined this year. 

Price: Students $4, adults $7, one teacher from each class at no charge. Call for more details or email: