Welcome to the second post in a series of four about homeschooling in Louisiana! You can find the other posts here:
- Louisiana Homeschool Laws
- Homeschool Field Trips in Louisiana – You’re here!
- Louisiana Homeschool Support Groups and Co-ops
- Louisiana Homeschool Free Resources
At New Orleans
Learn about the history of this Louisiana city. Find attractions and fun things to do with children.
Baton Rouge Moms
Schedule of events for the Baton Rouge area.
Louisiana Department of Culture, Recreation & Tourism
Together, the agencies of CRT offer a wide variety of resources, from parks, to museums to main street communities. To see the availabilities throughout our state, please choose from the list provided and make a point to visit them all.
S’port Kids Calendar
A free calendar of Events of Interest for Homeschool Families in and around Shreveport, Louisiana.
Aquariums, Ocean and Swamp Life
Audubon Aquarium of the Americas
We want to continue to offer new adventures for our guests. As we work together to rebuild our city, we need places that offer us an opportunity to play together. Canal Street at the River, #1 Canal Street, New Orleans.
The Barataria Preserve outside Marrero offers a taste of Louisiana’s wild wetlands. The preserve’s 23,000 acres include bayous, swamps, marshes, forests, alligators, nutrias, and over 200 species of birds (learn more about preserve wildlife here). Boardwalk and dirt trails wind through the preserve; check out the trail map, enjoy a self-guided tour, or explore with a cell phone tour. Waterways can be explored by canoe or kayak; hikers and paddlers can check out the preserve map here. Exhibits at the preserve visitor center highlight how the Mississippi River built Louisiana’s wetlands, the national importance of the area, and the relation between the land and its people.
Bayou Terrebone Waterlife Museum
The Bayou Terrebonne Waterlife Museum preserves and promotes the area’s long, colorful and historically important connection with the seafood and water transportation industries, as well as other wetlands and water based hunting, gathering and mining occupations. The Bayou Terrebonne Waterlife Museum ranks as one of the area’s most unique venues for private receptions, meetings and celebrations of every variety. The museum and its exhibits, charming back porch overlooking the bayou and serene bayou-side park offer unlimited options for those interested in a first-rate facility.
Cajun Country Swamp Tours
The tour area, Cypress Island/Lake Martin Swamp, is famous for its impressive scenic beauty and wildlife. Alligators, egrets, herons, bayous, ancient cypress trees covered with Spanish moss and more of what you envision a Louisiana swamp to be are waiting for you on Cajun Country Swamp Tours. The swamp tour is conducted aboard open swamp people boats (crawfish skiffs) that are designed to get us into the heart of swamp.
Cajun Pride Swamp Tours
Cajun Pride Swamp Tours is a privately owned wildlife refuge just 25 miles from New Orleans. We invite you to join us for a unique and educational journey back to the early days of Louisiana bayou and swamp explorations by offering authentic Louisiana swamp eco-tours, plantation tours, city tours and combination tours.
Champagne’s Cajun Swamp Tours
Our tours depart from the only Handicap Accessible dock for swamp boats on Lake Martin & transport you on a ecotourism adventure deep in the heart of the swamp. Where you will experience the real soul of a Louisiana swamp & bayou. Our Breaux Bridge Lake Martin store is a short drive from Lafayette, LA and less than an hours drive from Baton Rouge, LA. We have air conditioning & the only bathrooms at Lake Martin. Tours in French are also available. Tour departure times vary so please email or call for a reservation. We are a top rated Louisiana tourist attraction for family vacations. This tour is one of the best things to do in Lafayette, LA.
Global Wildlife Center
Enjoy a one and a half hour guided Safari Wagon tour over 900 acres of beautiful Louisiana countryside complete with 12 ponds and a lake. During the tour you’ll come face to face with bison, giraffe, zebra, camels, eland, and much more! The animals roam free – It’s Africa, in Louisiana!
Honey Island Swamp
Honey Island Swamp is unique because it’s one of the least-altered river swamps in the country. It’s pretty much in its original condition, almost a pristine wilderness. Take a personalized narrated nature tour into the 250-square-mile Honey Island Swamp. Nearly 70,000 acres of it is a permanently-protected wildlife area–the Nature Conservancy’s First Louisiana Nature Preserve. People from all over the world now explore this wildlife sanctuary with him.
Jean Lafitte Swamp Tours
Located only twenty-five minutes from New Orleans in the Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve, Jean Lafitte Swamp and Airboat Tours explore Louisiana’s back country along its meandering bayous abundant with wildlife and exotic plant life. Trained navigators escort you into the murky waters of Louisiana swamps where you will come face to face with the beauty and beasts of nature.
Louisiana Tour Company
This is Swamp & Airboat Tours near New Orleans. Our tours operate from the dock of Crown Point, located just a 35 minute drive from the French Quarter of New Orleans. As a bird flies, just 12 miles from the Quarter, yet we are a world apart. We are situated on the banks of Bayou Barataria, in the heart of the most dynamic ecosystem of North America. The Treasure Isle Swamps that surrounds our boat dock, is part of the “Barataria Estuary”. The word, Barataria, means “the good Land”. We are quite isolated, where there is but one road in and the same road out and are adjacent to the Largest Urban Park in the United States, “The Jean Lafitte National Park & Preserve”. The wetlands of the Barataria swamps are so rich in seafood and wildlife, that when Thomas Jefferson bought the Louisiana Purchase in 1803, he was only interested in New Orleans and it’s Swamps. Thomas Jefferson considered Barataria, the crown jewel of the purchase.
Alexandria Kid’s TREE House Museum
T.R.E.E. House is a unique educational and cultural resource that represents the community’s interest and investment in engaging and educating our children. The museum provides playful learning experiences and environments where children (1-12 years), families, schools and community groups discover and explore their world through hands-on exhibits and interactive programs. The mission statement summarizes the Museum’s commitment to the education of young children: planting the seeds of learning.
The Children’s Museum
Ongoing art activities and special programs. 327 Broad St., Lake Charles.
Children’s Museum of Acadiana
The Children’s Museum of Acadiana (CMA) is a hands-on participatory museum serving children and their families, schools, and community organizations by providing interactive exhibits, special services, performances, and workshops.
Louisiana Children’s Discovery Center
The Louisiana Children’s Discovery Center is the premier children’s museum on the Northshore. It is the perfect place for families with toddlers and children up to age twelve to learn and explore together in a safe and fun hands-on environment. The open and interactive area is filled with unique, entertaining and educational areas to explore.
Louisiana Children’s Museum
Since opening its doors in 1986, the Louisiana Children’s Museum has been one of the city’s premier attractions for children. We welcome 147,000 visitors per year, engaging children, families, caregivers, and school groups in memorable interactive experiences designed to make learning fun.
The Museum’s 30,000 square feet of exhibit space and programs offer children a diverse set of activities that promote learning across many disciplines – from reading and math skills to architectural ideas and the nuances of grocery shopping – through interactive play. Whether they are learning what bones they use to ride a bike, alongside Mr. Bones or loading up a cargo ship in the Little Port of New Orleans exhibit, children take an active role in their own learning.
Industry & Technology
Conrad Rice Mill
America’s oldest working rice mill. øne of the leading tourist attractions in this area of the Bayou Teche. 307 Ann Street in New Iberia. (800) 551-3245.
TABASCO® Pepper Sauce Factory
Everybody at PepperFest is just waitin’ to show you a good time. So relax, have a little taste of what we’re talkin’ about, and hang out with folks who are into two things: TABASCO® and havin’ a good time. Avery Island. (337) 365-8173.
History Museums and Adventures
Acadian Cultural Center
The Acadian Cultural Center in Lafayette tells stories of the origins, migration, settlement, and contemporary culture of the Acadians (Cajuns) and other area groups. Ranger programs, films, exhibits, and events share a variety of local traditions including music, story-telling, dance, and food, and explore the mysteries of the Atchafalaya Basin, Louisiana’s wildest place. Portable media players with guided tours of the museum in French, Spanish, and English can be borrowed at the visitor center information desk. Kids can explore the center and earn a badge with the Junior Ranger program.
LARC’s Acadian Village is Lafayette’s oldest authentic vision of life in 19th century southwest Louisiana, a showcase of authentic homes alongside a winding bayou which depict the unique Acadian architecture of the time. The homes were restored onsite and outfitted with period antiques.
Adam Ponthieu Grocery Store and Big Bend Post Office Museum
The Country Store Museum, representing a time capsule of Americana and old Avoyelles Parish, Louisiana, reflects the time period between 1900 and 1950 and is open to the public. Contents of museum feature many donated artifacts which include hardware, tools, kitchenware and utensils, medicine, grocery items, cold drinks, sewing materials and notions. Memorabilia pertaining to the Big Bend Post Office has survived and old ledgers used from the Ponthieu and Lemoine Times document business and transactions.
Angola State Prison Museum
Louisiana citizens also have the unique opportunity to actually “visit” Angola’s past by stopping by the Angola Museum. The museum, which was established in 1998 by Warden Cain, is dedicated to preserving Angola’s history. The museum has become an official tourist site in the parish and serves as a resource for information on the state’s correctional system.
American Italian Cultural Center
The American Italian Museum is located within the American Italian Cultural Center in New Orleans, Louisiana. The museum tells the history of American Italians in the Southeast and their contributions to all areas of our daily lives through photographs, articles, family histories, and memorabilia by themes such as Societies and Festivals, Music, the Immigrant, Geneology, Personalities, and much more.
Arna Bontemps African American Museum
The Arna Bontemps African American Museum and Cultural Arts Center was founded in 1988 by the Arna Bontemps Foundation, Incorporated, a non-profit, tax-exempt organization. The organization was formed through the Division of Community Affairs, Office of the Mayor, City of Alexandria, Louisiana. The Museum is the restored childhood home of Arna Bontemps – poet, author, anthologist, and librarian – who was considered the leading authority of the Harlem Renaissance. The period – sometimes referred to as the “New Negro” movement – is when young Black writers went to Harlem to share the Black experience through their writing.
Backstreet Cultural Museum
The Backstreet Cultural Museum officially opened its doors in 1999. However, its origins can be traced back three decades to when Sylvester Francis paraded with the Gentlemen of Leisure Social Aid & Pleasure Club. A man photographing the parade wanted Francis to pay $35.00 for his own photograph. To avoid such costs in the future, Francis bought both a Super 8 mm camera and a still camera and began documenting Carnival celebrations,second-line parades, and jazz funerals throughout the area.
The bicentennial of the Battle of New Orleans is January 8, 2015. The commemoration of the battle began in late September 2013 with the rededication of Chalmette Monument. Events, programs, and exhibits are planned throughout the months leading up to the bicentennial by Jean Lafitte and its partners, and special events will happen in the New Orleans area during the week beginning January 4.
French Quarter in New Orleans
Shortly after the French founded New Orleans in 1718, engineers drew up a formal city plan for Nouvelle Orleans—the area that we now call the French Quarter. The city quickly expanded beyond those original boundaries to become an important American port. People arrived from all over the world, joining the early inhabitants of the area to create a distinct culture rich in food, music, and tradition. Jean Lafitte’s French Quarter Visitor Center shares the history and traditions of the city and the lower Mississippi River delta through visitor center exhibits and a film.
Herbert S. Ford Memorial Museum
The Ford Museum’s collection reflects the life and culture of North Louisiana, Claiborne Parish in particular, from Pre-Columbian times to the present day. With exhibits ranging from Native American culture, Pioneer life, African-American history, and daily life in Claiborne Parish to the agriculture, lumber, and oil industries, the Ford Museum is a valuable resource for anyone interested in learning about North Louisiana’s past and present.
The Iberville Museum is located in the former Iberville Parish Courthouse (circa 1848). It also served as Plaquemine City Hall from 1906 to 1985. Today, the Museum houses artifacts of life in Iberville Parish from the early 1900s and features a Mardi Gras Room, complete with costumes of kings and queens of past carnival balls. It also has an extensive display from World War II and the Korean War. The Museum offers varied programs and activities throughout the year.
This museum includes artifacts from my family. My grandfather, the highly decorated Master Gunnery Sergeant William Curtis Grant, served one tour in Korea and two tours in Vietnam. My grandmother loaned much of his Marine Corps. memorabilia to the museum a year after his death in 2002.
Louisiana Political Museum
When some people think of Louisiana, they think of New Orleans and its Mardi Gras, or of Cajuns and their food, while others think of Louisiana’s famous politicians. And when they think of Louisiana politicians, what comes to mind? Well, Winnfield of course! And if that’s not what comes to mind, it certainly should be. You see, Winnfield is considered the birthplace of politics in Louisiana and is the home of the Louisiana Political Museum & Hall of Fame. It’s also the birthplace of three Louisiana Governors – Huey P. Long, Earl K. Long, and O.K. Allen.
Louisiana State Museum
Founded in 1906 with a mission to collect, preserve, interpret and present the state’s rich history and diverse cultures, the Museum’s collection now totals more than 450,000 artifacts and works of art. These provide an authentic experience of Louisiana to visitors from around the world while enhancing the quality of life for residents. Our “collection” includes a complex of seven historic French Quarter buildings that have become icons of New Orleans – especially the Cabildo and Presbytère on Jackson Square – and a statewide system of regional and special focus history museums in Baton Rouge, Thibodaux, Patterson and Natchitoches.
National World War II Museum
The National WWII Museum’s exhibits cover the epic and global scale of the war that changed the world, in a voice that is intimate and personal. Exhibits not only highlight the role of world leaders, but also the everyday men and women who found the strength and courage to accomplish the extraordinary. Currently housed in three buildings, each arranged around central themes of the war, Museum exhibits offer visitors an opportunity to experience the war through the eyes of the men and women who lived it. Interactives, oral histories and personal vignettes add a meaningful perspective.
New Orleans African-American Museum
Faubourg Tremé is one of the oldest and certainly largest pre-Civil war communities of free people of color (les gens de couleur libres). The Museum’s Tremé Walking Tour provides visitors with a unique opportunity to explore the area’s rich and vibrant colonial and post-colonial history with one of our licensed tour guides. Tour highlights include St. Augustine Church, with its “tomb of the unknown slave”; a delightful row of Creole cottages that evinces the area’s diverse architectural history, and a discussion of 19th and 20th-century Tremé-based artists and musicians. Congo Square is a significant component of the tour, showcasing the Square’s various incarnations as an auctioning site during the period of enslavement; a recreational gathering space for enslaved Africans, free people of color and others, and an open-air marketplace. The Tremé Walking Tour covers a distance of approximately one mile.
Old Governor’s Mansion
This is the second Governor’s Mansion to occupy the site. The first Governor’s Mansion, a large frame house built for Baton Rouge businessman Nathan King Knox, served as the official residence of Louisiana Governors from 1887 until 1929, when it was razed and the present Old Governor’s Mansion was built. The building cost almost $150,000 to complete, and, at a cost of $22,000 (a princely sum for the time), the Mansion was furnished with the finest damask and velvet drapes, crystal chandeliers, hand-printed French wallpaper, and other fine appointments.
Old State Capital
Louisiana’s Old State Capitol is a museum of political history governed by the Louisiana Secretary of State and accredited by the American Association of Museums. Since 1994, the former statehouse has served the people of Louisiana as a historical, cultural, civic and educational institution whose primary purpose is to collect, preserve and present, as an educational resource, documents, objects of art and artifacts that reflect the state’s politics, history, art and culture. The museum’s multimedia history exhibits engage visitors in an interactive exploration of the events and people that contributed to Louisiana’s story, while the award winning “We the People…” civic awareness exhibit helps audiences internalize the process of campaigns, elections and the day to day aspects of democracy. The museum also serves as a venue for press conferences, traveling exhibits, special programs and an annual lecture series.
As a distributary of the Mississippi River and a route to the heartland of Louisiana through the Atchafalaya Basin, Bayou Plaquemine was used as a navigable artery centuries before the age of European exploration. From the early 1700s, Bayou Plaquemine served as a commercial transport route, promoting settlement and economic prosperity in southwest and northern Louisiana via the Atchafalaya, Red and other rivers. The Plaquemine Lock was designed by Colonel George W. Goethals (1858-1928), the assistant to the chief engineer of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Goethals later gained distinction as chairman and chief engineer of the Isthmian Canal Commission for the design and construction of the Panama Canal.
When New Orleans fell to Federal troops in late April 1862, Confederate control of the Mississippi was in jeopardy. The Confederate army had already fortified the river bluffs at Vicksburg, Mississippi, but it needed another series of river batteries below the mouth of the Red River. The Red River was the primary route for the shipment of supplies from Texas to the heartland of the Confederacy. The bluffs near the small town of Port Hudson represented a perfect site for the river batteries. These bluffs were the first high ground upstream from Baton Rouge and overlooked a severe bend in the river. This bend presented an additional obstacle for Union warships.
Prairie Acadian Cultural Center
Waltz on in to the Prairie Acadian Cultural Center in Eunice to discover the life of Louisiana’s prairie Cajuns through ranger programs, exhibits, artifacts, and films.
River Road African American Museum
The River Road African American Museum, located in the historic district of Donaldsonville, Louisiana is the premier facilitiy in the South to focus on the history and heritage of
African Americans along the Mississippi River. With over 300 years of history, the legacy and importance of Africans in America to the growth of the South, the United States and the world is evident through the collection and exhibits of rare artifacts found at the museum.
Rural Life Museum
“Knowing the Past Betters the Future” at one of the top outdoor museums in the world. Choose your own adventure at the Rural Life Museum! With the 19th century Plantation area, the Folk Architecture section, The Exhibit Barn, 32 historic buildings and thousands of artifacts representing the rural way of life, there’s so much to see!
USS Kidd Memorial and Museum
It has been said by every generation that you learn by doing. Hands-on education is the key-word in today’s university classrooms where the teachers of tomorrow are being trained. And in teaching a course on World War II history and the United States’ island-hopping campaign across the Pacific, or the Battle of the Atlantic where the threat of German U-boats loomed constantly, what better way to apply a hands-on approach than to take a field trip to the USS KIDD, a vessel which actually participated in those events? Let your students see where a Japanese kamikaze pilot crashed his plane into the ship, the conditions that their grandfathers lived in, and the dangers a U-boat posed to a ship with a hull only three-eighths of an inch think.
Wetlands Acadian Cultural Center
The lives of the Acadians (Cajuns) and others whose travels brought them to Louisiana’s bayous are featured at the Wetlands Acadian Cultural Center in Thibodaux. Explore recreation, clothing, home furnishings, religion, cuisine, and fishing through exhibits, artifacts, videos, and films. A 200-seat theater is used for productions by the Thibodaux Playhouse, Inc., and other programs.
W. H. Tupper Genral Store Museum
W. H. Tupper operated his General Merchandise Store beginning in 1910 in a rural community just north of Jennings, Louisiana. When he closed the doors in 1949, the complete inventory remained on the shelves, undisturbed, until 1971 when it was carefully packed and warehoused. There it remained until his grandson Joe Tupper, Jr., donated the store’s contents for the creation of the W. H. Tupper General Merchandise Museum.
Museums of Science and Natural History
Alexandria Zoological Park
The Zoo offers a number of educational opportunities including Zoo School, Summer Safari Camps, Field Trips, and a number of other programs. Located at 3016 Masonic Drive or US Highway 165 Business, approximately 1 mile from the south traffic circle and two blocks from the Alexandria Mall.
Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium
Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium, located in the U.S. Custom House on Canal Street, encourages you to use all five senses as you explore North America’s largest museum devoted to insects and their relatives. You’ll discover why insects are the building blocks of all life on our planet and along the way, you’ll be shrunk to bug size; wander through a mysterious Louisiana swamp; join the active audience of an awards show for bugs, by bugs; and be captivated by thousands of butterflies in an Asian garden. Voted “A top museum for you and your kids” by CNN.com, 2009.
Audubon Nature Institute
Visitor Programs offer special presentations, animal encounters and tons of diverse interactive activities under the guidance of Audubon educators and trained volunteers. New Orleans, LA 70178, (504) 861-2537.
Audubon State Historic Site
This lush natural setting, with a variety of birds singing throughout the 100-acre forest, still inspires visitors. In these peaceful environs, it is easy to imagine the artist filling his sketch pad with notes and drawings for his famous series of bird illustrations. Audubon came upriver from New Orleans to do more than paint pictures. He had been hired to teach drawing to Miss Eliza Pirrie, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. James Pirrie, owners of Oakley. His teacher-artist arrangement was short-lived due to a misunderstanding with Mrs. Pirrie. Only four months after his arrival, Audubon returned to New Orleans. Although there is no record of his success in teaching Miss Pirrie to draw, in his personal endeavors he completed or began 32 bird paintings while at Oakley.
BREC’s Baton Rouge Zoo
More than 1,800 animals await you in the beautifully landscaped Zoo. 3601 Thomas Road, Baton Rouge. (225) 775-3877.
Louisiana Arts and Science Center
From art exhibitions and workshops to hands-on science exhibits and treasures from ancient Egypt, LASM has something to inspire everyone. 100 South River Road,, P.O. Box 3373, Baton Rouge, LA 70821, (504) 344-9478
LSU Museum of Science and Natural History
The LSU Museum of Natural Science was founded in 1936 and the current public exhibit area was opened on March 27, 1955 in Foster Hall. The Museum’s founder and first Director, Dr. George H. Lowery, Jr., was a professor of zoology at LSU. The Museum of Natural Science is a research museum, meaning it educates the public through exhibits and programs, houses a premier research staff committed to learning more about our natural world, and maintains collections that support this work. Research at the Museum centers on the following disciplines: mammalogy (mammals), ornithology (birds), ichthyology (fishes), herpetology (reptiles and amphibians), paleontology (fossils), archaeology and anthropology (early human culture), genetic resources (DNA), and science education.
Sci-Port Discovery Center
A 92,000 square-foot science and entertainment center in Shreveport-Bossier, featuring over 290 science, math and space exhibits, daily changing programs, an IMAX Dome Theatre, open-access, interactive, laser SPACE DOME Planetarium, gift shop and café. Sci-Port is located on the downtown Shreveport Riverfront. 528 Commerce Street, 820 Clyde Fant Parkway, Shreveport, LA 71101, (318) 424-3466
Zoo of Acadiana
Nestled on forty five acres of rolling landscape with a very natural setting and environment. Visitors are glad to see that our animals seem happy and content in their habitats and are not pacing and agitated. Located on Highway 90, South of Broussard, 116 Lakeview Drive, Broussard, LA 70518, (337) 837-4325.
An historic sugar plantation built in 1805, where the Guided Tour transports you into Louisiana’s Creole culture. Midway between New Orleans and Baton Rouge, on the Great River Road (HWY 18). (888) 799-7690.
Longue Vue House and Gardens
Working with local educators, Longue Vue has developed field trip experiences in the Lucy C. Roussel Discovery Garden that offer a multidisciplinary, cross-curricular approach to including elements of social studies, language arts, mathematics, and the visual arts into a science-based course of study. Art and history-focused tours of the historic house are also available.
Magnolia Mound Plantation
Through educational programs, workshops, lectures, festivals, and other special events, Magnolia Mound’s mission is to illustrate and interpret the lifestyle of the French Creoles who formed the fascinating culture which still influences and pervades life in southern Louisiana. 6201 Florida Boulevard, Baton Rouge, (225) 272-9200.
In the mid-19th century, a wealthy Louisiana sugar planter instructed his architect to build him the grandest home on the Mississippi River. And he did. Spectacular Nottoway Plantation was completed in 1859, and today this stunningly restored antebellum mansion, the largest in the South, welcomes visitors daily from all over the world.
Oak Alley Plantation
Located on the Mississippi River between the historic Louisiana cities of New Orleans and Baton Rouge, Oak Alley Plantation has been called the “Grande Dame of the Great River Road”. 1-800-44ALLEY.
Rosedown Plantation is located in the West Feliciana Parish community of St. Francisville along one of the most historic corridors in South Louisiana. The historic presence of the River created deep soil deposits to form uplands that became, in the days of the cotton boom, extremely productive and valuable. In addition to the natural flats, creeks draining to the River created some expanses of rugged, heavily treed terrain that became profitable as timberland.