Ages 12-14 | Historic

Come and see the country’s only World War I Museum!   You can hear what wartime was like in one of the audio rooms, view an amazing panoramic movie area and see ammunition used during the Great War. The museum shows how both men and women helped during the war.

Before Your Visit:

  • If you're interested in seeing the Observation Tower, call the museum to make sure it will be open (it does close in inclimate weather).
  • By this age, most students have learned about various wars.  Ask your child what they would be interested in viewing at the museum.
  • Explore the Great War site from PBS to learn about the key events, timeline and battles from WWI.

Explore the WW I Memorial:

  • You will see 9,000 poppy flowers under the glass bridge as you enter the museum.  Each flower represents 1000 people who died in combat during the war; a total of nine million.
  • There are extensive displays of swords, guns and artillary which allow visitors to see how large items were during the first World War.
  • The trench exhibit is a great place to see and hear what soldiers experienced as they lived and fought from trenches.  This is a must see at the museum!
  • A panoramic movie area showcases not only a movie, but a great display of wartime events.
  • Interactive light tables allow you to create flight plans for airplanes, create your own war poster, seee the inside of a machine gun and think about how camouflage can be used.
  • A walk-through crater exhibit shows the results of a howitzer shell strike.  Ask kids what they feel like when they stand in the crater.
  • Visitors will see many displays of military uniforms, vehicles, and a nice exhibit area that highlights medical supplies and a hospital tent.

Learn More about WWI:

There are some excellent books that teens will enjoy reading. 

Archie's War

"Archie's War" is a comic book/scrapbook that shows how the war impacted the life of a 10-year-old boy and his family.

Lord of the Nutcracker Men

"Lord of the Nutcracker Men" is the story of a boy who carves wooden soldiers based on the letters he receives from his father, who is fighting in the war.

When Christmas Comes Again

"When Christmas Comes Again" is a historical fiction diary of a french-speaking American girl who assists with the war by operating a switchboard on the Western front.

War Horse

"War Horse" is a story of a horse and his owner, who are separated during the war.  It's also been released as on DVD after being made into a movie in 2012.

The Letter Home

Although it's a picture book, "The Letter Home" is a moving account of a medic who writes a letter home to his son describing his experiences during the war.  A quick but powerful read.


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Visit one of the only stagecoach stops open to the public.  Tour buildings from the 19th and 20th century, ride an old stagecoach and explore the farm.  Learn more about where you would stay in the 1860’s and how pioneers traveled westward. 

Before Your Visit:

Register to volunteer??

  • Be sure to check the Events Calendar to see if there are any special activites you may want to attend.
  • If you are a Homeschool family, register for Homeschool Days.
  • We suggest wearing sneakers/closed toe shoes if you want to help with the animals or at the Blacksmith shop.
  • ???onlinemap or anything/scavenger hunt?

Explore Mahaffie:

  • Tour the interactive kiosks in the Heritage Center and watch a movie "I Knew It was a Fine Country" to learn more about the Mahaffie family.  Teens will also enjoy the telegraph kiosk.
  • Stop by the Blacksmith's shop, put on and apron and googles to help manner some of the items.
  • Enjoy a ride on the Stagecoach.
  • Tour the original house (that served as a hotel) and assist with cooking on the cellar stove (again, time/day)
  • Family Volunteer opportunities are also available!  Kids ages 6 - 16 (accompanied by a parent) can dress in period clothing and become part of daily life on the farm.


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Ever wonder what life is like when you're the President of the U.S.?  Learn about the personal and public life of Harry S Truman at the Truman Library & Museum.  You can see a replica of the Oval Office as it existed when Truman served, listen to campaign talk on old phones, and play with some interactive exhibits that tell more about life in the 1940's and 1950's. 

Before Your Visit:


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Come experience what it was like to be a pioneer and travel the trails!  Help decide what travelers would pack in their wagon, read diary entries from kids who followed the trails west, and see wagon swales from years ago.


Before Your Visit:

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Find out if kids who attended one-room schools still had PE, music and art classes.  Could boys and girls work together on school projects in the early 1900s?  Learn how long the schoolhouse was used for classes, how many students attended during the year and why it was closed.

Before Your Visit:

  • Before visiting, read the Rules for Teachers in 1872 from One Room Schoolhouses - ask your kids if they think they could have followed these rules.
  • If you enjoy geocaching, bring your GPS or cell phone with app - there is a coordinate on the trail next to the schoolhouse.
  • The schoolhouse is located on unpaved roads so drive accordingly.

Explore Lanesfield School:

  • Ask the staff if it’s possible to use an ink pen to practice the cursive letters shown on the board.  Kids will find it’s very time-consuming to write this way.
  • Read the board to learn about some of the subjects that were studied at the one-room school.  Spelling, recitation and writing were frequently practiced.  How is this different from what we learn in school today?
  • Talk to the teacher (docent) at the school about what older kids learned when they attended the one-room school.  What was done to prepare them for college?
  • Find out why the one-room school stopped being used, and in what year?  Does this surprise you and your kids?
  • Ask the docent or school marm:  Did students in one-room schools have access to resources for research, music, art?
  • View the items on exhibit in the visitors center – notice the types of books that were used, the requirements of a one-room school teacher, and the responsibilities of students.
  • Visit the gift shop for some unique, nostalgic items – one of our favorites is the pencil made from a tree branch.

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Other one-room schools in Kansas City: