Homeschool Field Trip: Visiting the Fire Museum of Maryland
Whether you’re vacationing in Baltimore or living in the Baltimore, Maryland area, definitely consider a visit to the Fire Museum of Maryland!
Even if your kids are are not big fans of fire trucks, I’m telling you, making the decision to visit the Fire Museum of Maryland was one of the best choices I made on our long weekend homeschool field trip to the Baltimore area.
Believe it or not, but I had never even heard of the Fire Museum until I started planning our trip. Always trying to get the best deals possible and do what I can to stretch my dollars, I happened upon the museum when I was searching through Baltimore-area attractions on my Groupon app. I found a deal, even had an extra coupon to sweeten the savings, and decided to add the Fire Museum to our itinerary.
My expectations weren’t high and, since the boys weren’t really into fire trucks anymore, I figured visiting this museum would be an easy & cheap way to fill up a few hours before our reservation to the “main” attraction for the day (which, if you’ve read about our long weekend in Baltimore, you’d know that the “main” attraction for the day ended up being a bust).
You guys, this place is awesome. I’m not even exaggerating one bit. The boys and I learned SO much and I can honestly say that our visit to the Fire Museum of Maryland ended up being one of my favorite parts of the whole vacation. Yep. It was that good.
Our Experience at the Fire Museum of Maryland
There is a fairly large parking lot for the museum, so it wasn’t hard to find a spot at all. When we entered the building, a staff member checked us in with our passes and then we were free to explore the museum. There just so happened to be a tour starting, so we were invited to join the tour to learn about the museum.
The man giving the tour reminded me of Mr. Rogers in the best way possible. His story-telling was energetic, he took the time to interact with all the kids, and he encouraged questions to be asked. He described various pieces of equipment on display (and would even demonstrate use if appropriate), told the history of the museum, and did it all with smile.
After a brief tour, we were encouraged to explore and told that there would be staff members around the museum if we had any questions. Well, if you’ve ever met my kids, you know they always ask lots of questions!
On the tour, the Great Baltimore Fire had been mentioned but, being that we’re from New Jersey, we had never even heard of this fire so…obviously…we had lots of questions. The gentleman took the time to tell us the story of the Great Baltimore Fire of 1904, showed us artifacts, and answered every single question. If you haven’t heard of the fire either, I definitely suggest learning about it because it’s quite the story! Better yet? Make a visit to the Fire Museum of Maryland and learn about it there!
After we learned about the fire, the boys and I walked around to see all of the historical fire vehicles and paraphernalia. There’s SO MUCH to see.
Towards the back of the building, there’s a working Fire Alarm Office where the boys and I learned of the complexity and history of fire alarms and dispatch. Another gentleman was in the office and was more than happy to demonstrate all of the machines for us and explain the processes and how things have changed over time. As cool as the fire trucks are, this was my favorite part of the museum.
After learning about fire alarms, we continued our walk around the museum. We also watched a brief video about the history of wooden ladders and got to learn about how they’re made. In addition, we got to stop by their Rare Prints Gallery to view fire fighting ephemera housed in a temperature-controlled room. So cool!
Closer to the entrance/exit, there’s a Children’s Discovery Room. The boys and I stopped in, but quickly left as it seemed that it was more geared towards the 5 and under crowd. There was plenty of fire truck toys to play with, fire jackets to try on, and even a fire truck to climb on and sit in the driver’s seat. If my boys had visited when they were younger, they would’ve loved it!
Learning with the Fire Museum of Maryland
Whether you’re able to visit the Fire Museum of Maryland in person or need to keep things virtual, there are plenty of learning opportunities available!
- Virtual Field Trips
- Field Trips
- Not just for schools! If you have a group of homeschooling friends, you could totally schedule your own homeschool field trip.
- STEM Lab at Home
- This STEM Chemistry Lab is FREE! This could be an awesome activity to do at home or with your homeschooling friends.
- Virtual Storytimes
- A number of fire-related books read by a real fire fighter on YouTube
- Free Lesson Plans
- Print them out and get learning! If you live in Maryland, these lesson plans align to MD curriculum standards.
Get in Touch with the Fire Museum of Maryland
Be sure to check out their website for even more information like visiting hours and upcoming events!
We had an awesome experience at the Fire Museum of Maryland and hope you get a chance to take a visit, too! It’s just about 2 hours away from our home, so we’re definitely planning on visiting another time (and bringing my husband along) so we can spend even more time learning about the history of fire fighting.
Until next time, stay safe and enjoy quality time with your family,
Elizabeth Dukart is a proud Georgia-based born and raised Jersey Girl, wife, and mom of 2 human boys & 1 canine boy.
Created in 2021, Elizabeth owns and publishes That Homeschool Family: a free resource for homeschooling parents and beyond! A seasoned blogger, Elizabeth previously published a popular location-specific family resource blog, but decided to “Pivot!” her blogging focus after she started homeschooling her two boys in 2020. In addition to this blog, you can follow Elizabeth’s homeschooling and family adventures on Facebook, TikTok, Instagram, YouTube, and Pinterest.
When she’s not busy taking over the world or homeschooling, Elizabeth can be found listening to music (especially The Beatles & Harry Styles!), being silly with her boys, watching movies with family, shopping, or traveling!
Have a question or want to work with Elizabeth? Send her an email!