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Funded visits for schools

If you are unable to visit our museums in person due to geographic, financial or other barriers, there are a number of ways we can support your teaching and learning:


What is Discover the Museum?

The Discover the Museum initiative started in 2018 with the purpose of coordinating school visits for classes who had not previously been to the National Museum of Scotland. The programme aims to build the confidence and knowledge needed for teachers and pupils to return to the museum again in the future, and to see the museum as a place that is accessible, friendly, and full of interesting artefacts and exhibits.   

In 2021 the project worked with Primary 4 pupils from Canal View Primary School in Edinburgh. Pupils worked with museum staff to learn more about museums and to help create a new gallery display at the National Museum of Scotland. In addition, pupils were able to use this knowledge to make a museum in their own classroom.  

In the video below, the teachers and staff involved in the 2021 project share their experiences and reflect on the impact it had on the pupils.

What do schools receive?

A primary school pupil eats an apple provided as part of a funded museum visit

As part of Discover the Museum, schools are provided with, free of charge: 

  • Coach transport 
  • A healthy snack upon arrival 
  • Resources (e.g. museum trails/worksheets) to support a general exploratory visit or a specific topic of the teacher’s choosing  
  • An introduction to the museum from a member of staff 
  • Personalised help to ensure a well-organised and supported experience 
  • A special soft-toy mascot, sent to each class prior to their visit to introduce the museum to the pupils. Classes can bring their mascot on visits to the museum and keep the toy afterwards as a memento of their experience. 

How do I apply?

Applications are not currently open for the Discover the Museum programme. If you would be interested in taking part in the future, please let us know by emailing us at

Primary school pupils writing on a worksheet in the museum

Get in touch

Edinburgh Decorative and Fine Arts Society logoThis project is supported by EDFAS (Edinburgh Decorative and Fine Arts Society).

If you have any questions, please contact

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