Families

Youth and family programs at the National Portrait Gallery are designed to “inform, involve, and inspire” the online and on-site visitor.

Family Resources

Introducing

Introducing… a new kind of story time! We shine a light on some of this country's lesser-known history makers and their portraits. With a Portrait Gallery educator, children will learn more about art, hear the stories behind the portraits, and even learn some new vocabulary. Select story times will be in Spanish. For children ages 3 and up and their families.

>> View the Introducing videos in the Learning Lab

Open Studio

The National Portrait Gallery is bringing art workshops to your home via YouTube with a new activity or technique. Grab a family member or your roommates, or make a virtual date with a friend, and get creative with artist Jill Galloway. Artists of all ages and skill levels will enjoy creating art inspired by the National Portrait Gallery’s collection.

>> View the workshops in the Learning Lab

The Outwin 2022: Family Guide

Welcome to The Outwin 2022: American Portraiture Today, which features finalists from the Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition! This audio guide is to help adults navigate the exhibition with young visitors, but anyone can enjoy it.

>> Use the QR codes on this page to access the tour.

Young Portrait Explorers

Join our virtual workshop for children ages 3-6 and their adult companions as we learn about art, history, and more! Portrait Gallery educators will lead a 30-minute activity that incorporates close looking at portraiture, movement and artmaking. This program takes place virtually and in-person. Please visit our Eventbrite page to see when the programs are taking place and to register.

Interested in planning a lesson of your own? Check out our Young Portrait Explorers Learning Lab collections where teachers, parents, and caregivers can access past programs.

Festivals

Check out the offerings below and head over to our online calendar to see when the next festival is taking place. Bring your friends and family, these events are free and open to all ages.

President’s Day Festival (February)

Celebrate President’s Day with the National Portrait Gallery! Packed with activities for all ages, the festival includes art projects, musical performances, spotlight talks, and workshops. While you are at the museum, check out the Portrait Gallery’s permanent exhibition, ‘America’s Presidents’ and visit the museum’s iconic collection of presidential portraits.

Women’s History Month Festival (March)

Join us for a celebration of Women’s History Month and pay homage to some of the remarkable women in the Portrait Gallery’s collection with a series of programs, discussions with guest panelists, art activities, workshops, and other festivities.

Girl Scout Festivals

The National Portrait Gallery offers an exciting interactive program that allows Girl Scout Brownies, Juniors, and Cadettes an opportunity for an educational and culturally enriching museum experience while earning points toward Girl Scout Legacy badges and Journey completions. Programs are approximately two hours in length and include:

  • An interactive tour of the National Portrait Gallery, showcasing women who have made a significant contribution to American history and culture, including the portrait of Juliette Gordon Low, the founder of the Girl Scouts of the USA
  • A hands-on activity in the Kogod Courtyard
Hispanic Heritage Month Festival (September)

Join the National Portrait Gallery in celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month. Learn about highlighted Latinx sitters from the Portrait Gallery’s collection in this bilingual celebration for all ages. The festival offers story times, live entertainment, arts and crafts, gallery tours, and much more.

Hispanic Heritage Month represents an opportunity to honor and highlight Latino achievements and contributions to U.S. history in various fields, such as arts and culture, economics, politics, athletics, and science.

Día de los Muertos (November)

Celebrate el Día de los Muertos with the National Portrait Gallery! This yearly event brings artists and performers from around the United States and Latin America to the Portrait Gallery for live music, folk dancing, art, culture, and tradition. This bilingual event is free and open to all ages.