Virtual Field Trips

The REACH Museum’s virtual field trips are an enriching option for your classroom, homeschool group, or distance learning class. REACH programs give a local slant to science and social studies topics, bringing history and science to life for your students. The 40-minute program includes: 

  • a live remote tour of museum exhibits  
  • interactive investigation 
  • activities for before and after the program, either independent or in the classroom 

Topics are correlated to academic standards and can be tailored to fit your curriculum needs. REACH Educators will join your virtual classroom via teleconference or provide a secure Zoom meeting. Students participate via their own devices or as a group in their classroom.

We also welcome after-school programs, scout groups, and homeschool groups! REACH Educators can tailor the experience for your group’s needs. 

$100 per 40-minute program, the limit of one class (30 students maximum.) Scholarships available for qualifying schools and organizations, please contact the Education Manager at for more information.  

A Special Thank You to the following sponsors and their support that allows the REACH to create and provide educational programs to the community!

What topics do virtual field trips cover?

Columbia River Resources for grades 2 to 5
Explore how people have been using the river’s resources throughout history. Meet some of the river’s creatures and understand how we can help protect their habitat.

Columbia River Resources for grades 6 to 12
Reflect on human use and impacts on the river throughout the past two hundred years using maps and models. Explore current research that is helping us better understand the river ecosystem and our effects on it.

Hanford Legacy for grades 5 – 12
Investigate artifacts and REACH exhibits to learn the stories behind Hanford’s role in the Manhattan Project, and get a glimpse into life at the Hanford Engineering Works during WWII and the Cold War.

Shrub-steppe Ecosystem for grades K-5
Explore animal and plant activity through the seasons in the arid lands of the Hanford Reach. Students use observation skills and drawing to understand how diverse parts of the ecosystem rely on each other for life.

Shrub-steppe Ecosystem for grades 6-12
The Hanford Reach National Monument preserves biodiverse areas of shrub-steppe, undeveloped because of the Han-ford site and home to animal and plant species found nowhere else. Research conducted on the Monument increases our understanding of human impacts on the ecosystem, including the effects of invasive plant species and the role of biological soil crust. Students use practices of nature journaling to understand the unique components of this arid ecosystem and their interconnections.

Geologic Past for grades 2-5 or grades 6-8
Journey through the exciting past of the mid-Columbia River region by exploring its rocks, fossils, and landforms. Meet some of the Pleistocene creatures that once roamed the land and river. Students will relate local features to the rock cycle and story of the earth itself, including lava flows and Ice Age floods.

Washington Wildlife for preschool
Explore the amazing animals that live in the Columbia Basin and the special ways they survive in the dry shrub-steppe and in the river. Stories, songs, and movement help us learn how these animals are different from us but still so important.

Plants and Seeds for preschool
Explore native plants of the Columbia Basin and our neighborhoods to learn what makes them special. Stories, songs, and movement help us learn the connections among plants, animals, and people.

Contact Pauline Schafer at to learn more about virtual field trip topics and to design your group’s experience with the REACH.