School Programs

School programming will return in Fall 2023.

Langley Centennial Museum has been delivering quality school programs to the students in Langley, and beyond, since 1974 and salishan Place by the River will continue that. For the past 45 years we have been sharing our heritage and educational expertise with the students of BC. The arts, culture and heritage centre has a full-time Arts, Culture and Heritage Educator, highly qualified instructors, and a team of over 50 volunteer docents sharing our heritage and educational expertise with the students of this province.

What we offer

salishan Place by the River school programs offer a unique learning opportunity. Whether it is a program led by our incredible docent team at the museum, a trip back in time to the Lochiel one room schoolhouse, or a visit by one of our professional Instructors to your classroom, the result will be the same - an engaging and highly educational experience. We also have a number of very economical self-guided programs which can take place inside the museum or in the form of walking tours which take the class out into the surrounding community.  

 Docent led programs

Archaeology: excavation and interpretation  |  grades 6-7

Students transform into archaeologists and excavate artifacts; measure, classify, and complete lab analysis sheets; and interpret how Indigenous artifacts were once used, and what they can tell us about BC First Nations culture.

Communities past and present  |  grades 1-3

Students roll up their sleeves and break out the elbow grease in this hands-on program that recreates the roles and responsibilities of pioneer school children. Students try their hands at farm chores, washing clothes, baking, and shopping. 

Fraser Valley families  |  grades K-2

Students learn basic human, family, and community needs; discuss similarities and differences between the needs of early First Nations and European families and those of today’s families. Students handle historical artifacts, discuss seasonal activities of First Nations, and play pioneer and traditional First Nations’ games.

Medicines, maladies, and miracles  |  grades 6-7

Students take a walk through the medical maladies of the past by handling old doctor’s tools, playing plaguing games, and discovering the innovations and breakthroughs that have brought the field of medicine from misguided to miraculous.

Pioneer Christmas  |  grades K-1

Christmas traditions of long ago are brought to life as students handle typical pioneer gifts, bake gingerbread cookies, and make popcorn tree decorations.

Shapes and symbolism: introduction to indigenous art  |  grades 3-6

Making use of the museum’s appreciable collection of First Nations’ art, students will be taken on an artistic journey of discovery where shapes and symbols convey deep cultural beliefs, myths, and traditions. Unique hands-on activities will allow students to employ the techniques they have observed to create their own works of art.


 Arts programs - instructor led

Art in the park: environmental art  |  grades 3-7

Students are introduced to the history of environmental art with a focus on the ephemeral artwork of Andy Goldsworthy. Working together, students will collect objects, create compositions, and troubleshoot basic engineering requirements for their collaborative artworks.

Canadian landscapes: the group of seven  |  grades 3-7

Students are introduced to the history of landscape painting and review the works of the Canadian Group of Seven. Student will create a landscape composition in oil pastels. This program can be taken outside to the schoolyard or done in the classroom.

Caution: salmon crossing!  |  grades K-2

Students transform into small Salmon Fry in this art program where their imagination is ignited by the lifecycle of salmon. Students will experiment with watercolour paint and paper, trying out techniques such as salt and wax, blending, and washes, in order to create their very own salmon ecosystem.

Coastal images: Emily Carr  |  grades 2-7

Students are introduced to the artwork of Emily Carr and her travels to visit First Nations villages on the Skeena River and Haida Gwaii that inspired her artwork. Students will create an Emily Carr inspired composition using watercolour.

Coastal waters  |  grades 2-5

Students will dive deep into the waters of the Pacific Coast to explore the animals that call the Pacific Coast home. They will choose an animal from the Pacific Coast to focus their art project and to inspire their creativity. Learning everything from their animal’s adaptability in the local BC environment to their survival needs, students are eager to create a vivid art piece representing their animal.

Monotype printmaking with Bill Reid images  |  grades 1-7

This interactive workshop allows children to learn about Haida artist, Bill Reid, and his world-renowned artworks. Students produce their own works of art created through a step-by-step printmaking process. 

 History programs - instructor led

Collecting the past  |  grades 2-5

Through artifacts, historical photos, and displays, students examine community life in the past and compare it with today. Program focus can be adapted to include either pioneer or First Nations’ artifacts.

Langley's history: from footpaths to freeways  |  grades 2-4

Using a variety of maps and photographs, students learn about the development of Langley, Lower Mainland communities, and British Columbia. The evolution and impact of transportation is examined to uncover its effect on community development – from waterways to railways and trails to freeways.

People of the river  |  grades 3-5

Examine the culture of the Sto:lo people through the museum’s vast collection. Enjoy a hands-on learning experience that focuses on the lifestyles of the people who have occupied the banks of the Fraser River for millennia. Explore the culture, diet, and family life of the regions’ first inhabitants.

 Lochiel programs - instructor led

Christmas at Lochiel  |  grades 1-3

Crafts, caroling, and storytelling help bring the holidays to life in the rustic classroom. The regular Lochiel program is modified with festive activities that would have been typical of the holiday season in a turn-of-the-century one-room schoolhouse.

Lochiel: one room schoolhouse  |  grades 3-6

A costumed schoolmarm interpreter takes students back in time to become the class of 1924. Students take on the roles and responsibilities of a pioneer student. Obedience, good manners, and hard work are insisted upon – but students have a good time despite the high standards.


 Discovery trunk rentals

Archaeology trunk  |  grades 6-7

Students perform a variety of hands-on activities to understand how archaeologists learn about the past. Using archaeological findings, photos of a dig, and information cards, students cover the process from excavation and lab analysis to interpretation. 

First nations technology trunk  |  grades 4-7

Engage your students and their creativity by bringing this educational trunk into your classroom. Students will engage with natural materials that Indigenous people used in building their rich culture. Everything is engaging in this new kit, from precious Coast Salish ‘tools’ to visual aids in order to transform students back in time.

Pioneer children trunks  |  grades K-3

Book one of our three trunks of replicated 1920s boys’ and girls’ clothing, games, and activities to use in your classroom. These trunks are a perfect complement to the Fraser Valley Families program, as well as your field trip to Lochiel Schoolhouse.

  • Trunk 1: Kindergarten and Grade 1
  • Trunk 2: Grades 2 and 3


 Self-guided walking tours

Fort Langley cemetery walking tour  |  grades 2-10

Explore a 138-year-old Victorian cemetery. Use maps to locate historic graves, learn personal facts about the deceased. Explore the evolution of gravestone features and symbols, and discover demographic patterns of the cemetery.

*Note: Parental involvement is required for elementary classes.

Fort Langley historic walking tour  |  grades 4-10

Discover the history of Fort Langley while exploring the village. Students follow a map to locate numerous locations, use historic photos and facts to compare with the community today, observe and identify architectural details, and answer in-depth questions.

*Note: Parental involvement is required for elementary classes.


Program registration

School Programming will return in Fall 2023.