Education Programs

ETHS offers multiple programs for museum and classroom learning. All student programs are rooted in literacy, align with current state social studies standards, and can be adjusted to accommodate various grade levels.

Objects Over Time

Wanting your class to explore a broader scope of history? This program allows students to examine objects from 300 years of Tennessee history and encourages them to consider how technology has changed over time. Students will examine objects in small groups, then present their observations to the class. Working together, students will place their objects on a timeline spanning from 1700 to the present day, with significant dates in both Tennessee and U.S. history. Discussion of these dates and the accompanying objects will help students to grasp the material culture of the area as well as the historical happenings that shape it.  

This program is best for students grades 5 – 12 but can be adapted to younger students.  

Discovery Boxes

Explore the people who made up the community of East Tennessee at the time of Tennessee statehood! In this program, students will explore artifacts separated into nine different boxes, each representing a different role in the community. Students will examine the objects in each box and use their deductive reasoning to determine who each box might have belonged to. At the end of the discovery period, students will present their box to the class and together, they will apply their knowledge to guess who might have owned the objects in the box. A museum educator will work with the students to provide additional information about the objects and what they show about the unique cultures and economic factors that determined people’s possessions.  


Make the Revolutionary War come alive through this interactive program focusing on the Overmountain Men and the Battle of Kings Mountain. Students will analyze a painting, participate in a reader’s theatre, and learn the greater context for the Battle of Kings Mountain in the Revolutionary War. They will hear the words of Reverend Doak, delivered at the gathering at Sycamore Shoals and see objects similar to what the Overmountain Men would have carried on their trek to South Carolina.  

Gallery Tour

As part of every museum field trip, students will get to explore the signature exhibition, Voices of the Land. To help students navigate the 6,000 sq ft of museum space, they will complete an activity sheet which focuses on important stories, figures, and places in East Tennessee history. The activity sheets are designed to encourage students to think critically about history, to generate questions for historical research, and to summarize the information they take in throughout the course of the field trip.