Texas History for Kids

Here are some great resources to help teach your kids about Texas including lesson plans, field trip ideas and more!

Interesting Sites

Texas Beyond History –  a public education service of the Texas Archeological Research Laboratory at The University of Texas at Austin. Texas Beyond History covers not only the prehistoric peoples – Indians or Native Americans – but also much of the early history of the Spanish, French, Mexican, and Anglo explorers, missionaries, soldiers, miners, traders, and settlers who lived and often died in Texas. And later history, too – German farmers, Black freedmen, and Mexican American laborers among others.

Texas State Historical Association –  mission to “foster the appreciation, understanding, and teaching of the rich and unique history of Texas and, by example and through programs and activities, encourage and promote research, preservation, and publication of historical material affecting the state of Texas.”

Texas Parks and Wildlife – Step through the doors of historic homes and inns, and imagine the lives of the people who inhabited these places. Information on state parks, outdoor events, lodging and more.

Texas Arrowheads and Indian Artifacts Online Museum – Indian Artifacts from prehistoric times to the early Clovis and Tejas Native American tribes.

Institute of Texan Cultures – Texas’ Native Americans – Information, curriculum and activities for 4th graders.

Barbed Wire Museum – Everything you want to know about barbed wire and fencing tools.

Great Texas Field Trip Ideas

The Alamo – San Antonio, Texas
The Spanish mission which has come to represent courage and the cause of liberty for all Texans.

Texas Capitol Visitor Center – Austin, Texas
The Capitol Visitors Center encourages educators to bring students for guided tours of its exhibits. Also available are lesson plans, classroom activities, vocabulary lists and research topics for all grade levels.

The Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum – Austin, Texas
A dynamic educational institution that tells the “Story of Texas” with three floors of interactive exhibits and IMAX. A Teacher Curriculum Guide and poster is available for “Texas – the big Picture” – a film presentation of the wonders of Texas.

The Museum of Health and Medical Science – Houston, Texas
Take a fantastic, larger than life tour of the human body. The exhibit contains huge sculptures of human organs: take a seat on a giant tooth inside an enormous mouth, walk through a 10-foot brain alive with electrical activity, peer inside a colossal eyeball, or stand beneath a 22-foot-long backbone with ribs. There are interactive audio and video kiosks, hands-on exhibits, educational programs and science classes.

Battleship Texas & San Jacinto Battleground – LaPorte, near Houston
Step back in time to the days when the Battleship TEXAS was the pride of the U.S. Navy fleet and visit the world’s last Dreadnought. The San Jacinto Monument and Museum is dedicated to the “Heroes of the Battle of San Jacinto and all others who contributed to the independence of Texas.” Located on the site of The Battle of San Jacinto where General Sam Houston defeated General Santa Anna.

Space Center Houston – Nasa Road One, Clear Lake
Space Center Houston provides an educational experience that’s out of this world. Take a look behind the scenes of NASA’s Johnson Space Center, visit the many interactive exhibits, see the Astronaut Gallery with spacesuits, touch a moon rock and more! There are educational programs for teachers and homeschool.

Texas State Aquarium – Corpus Christi, Texas
You not only travel an aquatic journey from the shore to the depths of the Gulf but also have the opportunity to observe dive shows, feeding demonstrations, and have a “hands on” experience with sharks, stingrays, hermit crabs, and more!

Dinosaur Valley State Park – Glen Rose, Texas
Dinosaur Valley State Park contains some of the best preserved dinosaur tracks in the world. The dinosaur tracks are located in the riverbed, so please call ahead to check on river conditions. The park also has 15 miles of trails, picnic and camping facilities.

The Texas State Railroad – Rusk or Palestine
Passengers may board the historic steam powered trains at either Rusk or Palestine. Both ends of the line have Victorian style train stations. The trip takes 1 and a half hours to reach the opposite station. Once visitors have arrived, they have 1 and a half hours to enjoy lunch, browse through the depot’s train store or take a short nature hike. Passengers then re-board for the return trip home.

Fort Worth Museum of Science and Natural History – Fort Worth, TX
Dedicated to lifelong learning and anchored by our rich collections, the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History engages our diverse community through creative, vibrant programs and exhibits interpreting science and the stories of Texas and the Southwest.

George Ranch Historical Park – Richmond, Texas
Step back in time to experience more than 100 years of Texas history. A wonderful place for a field trip, this living history ranch has educational activities for kids of all ages. See and Learn about the skills of working cowboys, the role of black cowboys, early pioneers to Texas, a working blacksmith and more!! Call ahead to schedule a time for your group or attend one of many special events.

Texas Cowboy Hall of Fame – Fort Worth, Texas
The newest attraction in the Fort Worth Stockyards is the Texas Cowboy Hall of Fame, which pays tribute to 58 of the top cowboys and cowgirls in Texas.

The National Cowgirl Museum – Fort Worth, Texas
The museum has five galleries of exhibitions featuring western artifacts, photographs and art work, three theaters, a children’s area, research library, gift shop and more.

The Museum Of Western Art – Kerrville Texas
The Cowboys, the Native Americans, the Settlers, the Mountain Men and others who tamed the West… share their adventure through the rotating exhibits on display at the Museum of Western Art where the legend of the American West lives on.

Texas Freshwater Fisheries Center – Athens, Texas
This Center houses a hatchery, laboratory, aquarium, and educational center focusing on underwater wildlife in the state’s freshwater streams, ponds, and lakes. Features also include a wetlands trail, alligator exhibit, an opportunity to fish and picnic areas.

Vanishing Texas River Cruise – Lake Buchanan, north of Austin
Explore the awesome beauty of the Colorado River at Canyon of the Eagles – seasonal wildflowers, wildlife, waterfalls, cliffs and more!!

Nature Centers in Texas

Amarillo – Wildcat Bluff Nature Center

Austin – Austin Nature and Science Center

Bellaire – Nature Discovery Center

Brownsville – Sabal Palm Audubon Center and Sanctuary

Boerne – Cibolo Nature Center

Dallas – Dallas Nature Center

Fort Worth – Fort Worth Nature Center and Refuge

Houston – Armand Bayou Nature Center

Kerrville – Riverside Nature Center

Midland – Sibley Nature Center

Orange – Shangri La Botanical Gardens and Nature Center

Padre Island – South Padre Island Birding and Nature Center

Weslaco – Valley Nature Center

Wichita Falls – River Bend Nature Works

About Lyman

Lyman Hardeman has held a deep interest in Texas history. He spent his youth in College Station, Texas and received a degree in Electrical Engineering at Texas A&M in 1966. In 1995, Lyman created Lone Star Junction, a popular Texas history website that later merged with TexasProud.com. Lyman is a life member of the Texas State Historical Association and the author of Texas A&M The First 25 Years.