Valentine Learning Trunks

Valentine Learning Trunk


For students learning together in hybrid or in-person settings, the Valentine is pleased to offer Valentine Learning Trunks. Learning Trunks are a comprehensive museum in a box experience loaned and delivered directly to your classroom. Each trunk comes with reproduction artifacts and primary sources, activities and suggested lesson plans for integrating this hand-on experience into your curriculum. Additionally, teachers are provided with supplemental digital content, including videos, activities and background information help you utilize the materials and connect with Virginia SOLs.

Trunks are delivered to schools by Valentine staff and can remain onsite for up to two weeks. Following your loan period, the Learning Trunk is picked up by a Valentine staff member, before being sanitized, tidied up and sent out to a new school.

Available Learning Trunk Themes:

  • Powhatan People (Grades K – 6)
  • Design in Time: Hats and Clothing from the past (Grades pre-K – 2)
  • Richmond Changes: Exploring Past and Present in Richmond (Grades K-6)

Learning trunks can also be combined with a virtual museum visit!

Curious what’s in a Learning Trunk? Check out a sneak peek of our Powhatan People trunk below!



Ballot Battle: Women’s Suffrage (available as outreach or virtual!)


100 years ago, women fought for and secured the right to vote with the enactment of the 19th Amendment in 1920. Who were the players working for and against women’s suffrage in Virginia? What strategies did they use to persuade? During this virtual program, students will consider these questions as they analyze primary source documents related to the pro and anti-suffrage movements in Virginia.  


Civil Rights Richmond: Housing Discrimination & Redlining (available as virtual and outreach!)

Right now, Richmond has 1,000 fewer affordable homes than we need to house our citizens this year. In this virtual programs, students will explore how the housing crisis emerged by analyzing primary source documents that look at housing discrimination in Richmond’s past in practice, policy and law. Look at Richmond’s redlining map from the 1930s and make connections from the past to current issues within our city.  


Monumental: Analyzing the Lost Cause monuments on historic Monument Avenue (available as outreach or virtual!)













Monumental: Analyzing the Lost Cause monuments on historic Monument Avenue. In this program, students will discuss the nature of public memory and engage in critical thinking related to this timely topic. Students will analyze primary source documents related to the creation of the Lee Monument.

Program Objectives: The student will demonstrate skills for historical thinking, geographical analysis, economic decision making, and responsible citizenship by analyzing primary and secondary sources and evaluating current events and decisions in Richmond.


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Controversy/History Series

For most, 2020 brought unexpected challenges and uncomfortable conversations amidst a global pandemic and massive social change. This year, for the Valentine’s tenth season of our popular conversation series, we invite Richmonders to virtually engage with one another as we unpack this historic moment, the impact of 2020 and the way forward as a community.

Each event is co-hosted by Director Bill Martin and Coffee with Strangers host Kelli Lemon, with expert speakers and lively conversation among area experts and attendees.

The full schedule of 2020-2021 dates and topics can be found below. Controversy/ History is free, virtual and open to the public!

2020 and Voting
October 6, 2020 | 5:30-6:30 p.m.
Register here

2020 and Mental Health
November 3, 2020 | 5:30-6:30 p.m.

2020 and Business
December 1, 2020 | 5:30-6:30 p.m.

2021 and Education
January 5, 2021 | 5:30-6:30 p.m.

2021 and Activism
February 2, 2021 | 5:30-6:30 p.m.


33rd Annual Court End Christmas


The 33rd Court End Christmas will take place Sunday, December 8, from 12 to 4 p.m. Free admission and shuttle transportation will be provided to the following historic sites:

The Valentine, the Valentine First Freedom Center, The Executive MansionHistoric St. John’s ChurchVirginia State CapitolThe John Marshall HouseMonumental Church, American Civil War Museum’s White House of the Confederacy and Masons’ Hall

This fun community tradition includes children’s activities, performances, refreshments, gift shops, music, tours and much much more.

We’re excited to welcome The Urban Hang Suite, who will be on-site selling hot beverages and Ardent, who will be pouring their Valentine-inspired Winter Warmer beer. Attendees can also enjoy pizza from the Zorch Pizza food truck and music from 103.7 PLAY.

A full list of performances and activities at the Valentine (SHUTTLE STOP A/H):

You can enjoy even more activities at the other eight historic sites:

The John Marshall House (SHUTTLE STOP B): Preservation Virginia‘s John Marshall House is a short walk from the Valentine and the second stop on our bus route. They will be offering mini tours of the Chief Justice’s historic home every 15 minutes. Additionally, Silhouettes by Blane will be cutting silhouette portraits on a first come, first served basis.


The Virginia State Capitol (SHUTTLE STOP C): Designed by Thomas Jefferson, the Virginia State Capitol is one of nine sites taking part on Sunday, December 8. The capitol will offer Court End Christmas attendees hourly guided tours, and you’re invited to discover the history of this National Historic Landmark throughout the day.


The Executive Mansion (SHUTTLE STOP C): The Executive Mansion, home of Virginia Governors since 1813, is back for Court End Christmas 2019. The Mansion will be offering walk-through tours with guides on hand to provide information and answer questions. Cookies will also be available on a first come, first served basis.


The Valentine First Freedom Center (SHUTTLE STOP D): At the First Freedom Center, visitors will be able to enjoy gallery talks about the history of religious freedom. Visitors will be able to explore the space and see the First Freedom Monument where the General Assembly met during the American Revolution.


Masons’ Hall (SHUTTLE STOP E): National Historic Landmark Masons’ Hall will be holding an open house for Court End Christmas visitors. They will be offering tours for attendees to discover the history behind the oldest continuously operating Masonic Lodge in North America.


Historic St. John’s Church (SHUTTLE STOP F)St. John’s Church will be open for Court End Christmas from 1:00-5:00 offering tours and photos with Colonial Santa. This historic location will also have colonial crafts and refreshments available in the Visitor Center.


Monumental Church (SHUTTLE STOP G): Main Street A Capella will be performing for Court End Christmas audiences at Historic Richmond’s Monumental Church from 2:00-2:30 and again at 3:00-3:30. Monumental Church will also be offering tours throughout the day.


The American Civil War Museum’s White House of the Confederacy (SHUTTLE STOP A/H): The White House of the Confederacy will be offering Court End Christmas visitors stationed tours from noon to 4 p.m. They will also be providing light refreshments and children’s crafts.


Below, you can see the map for each bus stop. You can also access it HERE:



Monument Avenue: Orgins and Reverberation Student Walking Tour

Students will learn about the past and present of Richmond’s historic and changing Monument Avenue through an augmented reality guided walking tour. Guides will lead students in discussion about the creation and development of Monument Avenue as students experience a variety of primary sources related to the monuments and Lost Cause narrative through images and audio delivered through Augmented Reality glasses. This tour is limited to 9 students at a time, and is only available for middle and high school students.


Program Objective: Students will experience background information and primary sources in a multi-sensory walking tour that will create an understanding of how events of the past have shaped our city’s public memory and monumental landscape.



Capitol Square Walking Tour













This guided walking tour explores Capitol Square’s history, architecture and monuments.


Ancients in the Neighborhood Walking Tour













On this walking tour through Richmond’s Court End neighborhood, students explore Richmond architecture influenced by Egypt, Greece and Ancient Rome. Stops include (but are not limited to) the 1812 Wickham House, Capitol Grounds, Egyptian Building and Monumental Church.

Combine with our Greek by Design program for an in depth look at neoclassical architecture in the 1812 Wickham House!


Era Explorations: Segregation/ Integration (available as outreach or virtual!)













Students will explore the realities of Jim Crow and the segregation and integration eras in the Greater Richmond area by examining the figures and disputes that shaped national change.

Program objectives: Students will work with primary source documents, newspaper articles and photos to examine the impact of segregation, integration and the Civil Rights Movement on Richmond citizens.