Guided Tours (Grades 1–5)


A group of students sit in front of an pink figural artwork

Guided tours, also referred to as docent-led tours, are conducted by specially trained volunteer educators who engage students in close looking, discussion, and creative and critical thinking about works of art in the museum.

Docent-led tours are only offered to students in grades 1–12. Most docent-led tours are one hour in length. Exceptions are noted under the tour descriptions below.

Docent-led fall 2018 tours are offered September 24, 2018–December 21, 2018. Tour times each weekday morning are 10:0010:3011:30, and 12:00, unless otherwise indicated. Please note that not all tours are available at all times.

Request your tour using our Student Tour Application at least two weeks in advance of your preferred date.

Museum Introduction Tours

All Museum Introduction tours are 45 minutes for grades 1–2 and 60 minutes for grades 3–5.

Art from Many Places 
The Art Institute's collection includes art from many geographic locations, historical eras, and varied cultures. Students will develop looking and critical thinking skills as they explore the differences and similarities among works of art throughout the museum.

Limit: 120 Students

Clues from the Past 
Students will hone their investigative skills as they uncover the “clues” works of art may tell us about the interests, world views, and beliefs of peoples from former times.

Limit: 120 Students

Self, Family, and Community 
Students will explore the ways artists depict individuals and their relationships with their families and the ways in which these groups form and interact with larger communities.

Limit: 120 Students

Stories in Art 
Every picture tells a story! Some works of art might tell the whole story, others might just tell a part. Students will discover the ways artists tell stories visually and will discuss elements of storytelling including characters, setting, action, sequence, and narration.

Limit: 120 Students

Studio Tours (Grades 3–5)

Studio tours are on hiatus for the fall semester of the 2018–19 school year.

During this two-hour experience, students explore art making and materials in the museum’s global collection on a one-hour docent-led tour. Following the tour, students create original artwork with a teaching artist in a studio space.

Limit: 35 students
Tours begin at 10:00

Daley School Studio Programs are supported by the Woman’s Board of the Art Institute of Chicago and JPMorgan Chase.

Specialized Tours (Grades 4–5)

Impressionism and Post-Impressionism 
Students discover how Impressionist and Post-Impressionist works of art reflected new attitudes toward nature and 19th-century life. They examine these artists’ stylistic innovations and note how their outlooks represented a radical change from the past as well as critical portents for the future.

Limit: 80 Students
60 minutes for grades 4–5

American Art: Themes and Ideas 
Students explore informing ideas of United States history and culture by engaging with works of art thematically from all historical periods.

Limit: 80 students
60 minutes for grades 4–5

Questions about student tours? Contact us at (312) 443-3907 or


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