Educator's Guide


IKEducation Programs

We are delighted to present the 2020-2021 Educator’s Guide. In it, you will find programs offered through IKEducation, a collaborative K-12 education initiative between the Eisenhower Foundation and the Eisenhower Presidential Library, Museum, and Boyhood Home in Abilene, Kansas.

Our professional IKEducators are excited to work with you and your students. Find the program that best meets your learning needs and follow the easy steps to book your spot now!

Every IKEducation program is designed to utilize primary sources, meet state and national standards, and teach about the life or times of Dwight D. Eisenhower. We provide students with a hands-on experience they'll never forget!


Classrooms are facing a year of uncertainties due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As schools and teachers make changes to safely serve students, IKEducation will similarly modify our offerings to accommodate their needs. Therefore, this Educator's Guide may look different as the year evolves. 


As you browse the Educator’s Guide, these symbols will designate the format availability for each program:


Go to our Plan your Field Trip page, when you are ready to book a program.


(-ish. We often customize our programs to fit the level you need, so don't hesitate to ask.)


I is for Ike Story Time 

Grades K-2          30 minutes

all symbols


Our IKEducators will use an alphabet book and artifacts to provide an interactive story time that introduces our youngest historians to the life of Dwight D. Eisenhower.

Little Ike Artifacts

Grades 3-5          45 minutes 


Step back in time and learn about “Little Ike,” as Dwight D. Eisenhower was known during his boyhood. This program will use artifacts that paint a picture of Little Ike's rural Kansas life from 1890 - 1910.

Dogs for Defense

Grades K-5          1 hour



At a time when every American was asked to make sacrifices for the war effort, World War II marked the establishment of a program to which families donated their dogs to serve in the U.S. military. These four-legged recruits were transformed through training from loving pets into working troops. Students hear the story of Chips, a real Hero Hound who left the family sofa, entered the battlefield, and returned home a hero. This program is customized to best fit your students’ grade level.

Rosie the Riveter    

Grades 3-5          1 hour



When America's men left to fight with the Allies in World War II, women were recruited to work at non-traditional jobs in defense plants and factories. These “Rosie the Riveters” proved their abilities to America and have not looked back since. In this program, students will sing, solve puzzles, recreate their own Rosie photo, and use their critical thinking skills to analyze primary source photos and propaganda posters. This program is customized to best fit your students’ grade level.

Attic Artifacts: World War II Kids

Grades 3-5          1 hour



Following World War II, many Americans kept souvenirs of lost loved ones or their time in the war. Many of these articles were stored in boxes or trunks and then tucked away in attics, basements, and garages for decades. In this program, students learn what qualifies as an artifact, and how important artifacts are as sources of information. Students handle and evaluate images, documents, and a variety of artifacts from World War II.

Flat Ike

Grades 3-5          30 minutes


The Flat Stanley books by Jeff Brown have been entertaining young readers for years, while also starting a movement that has taught kids about geography and social studies. IKEducation wants to continue that effort, so we are providing a flattened version of the statue of Ike that overlooks the artifacts of his life — from his boyhood home to his final resting place at the Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum. Students will learn about the Great Seal of the United States, the Ike Jacket, map reading, and the features of the campus while creating photo souvenirs of their visit. Teachers and students can continue learning and sharing with Flat Ike long after their field trip is over.

Duck and Cover

Grades 4-5          1 hour


The Civil Defense Administration educated and reassured all Americans that they could survive an atomic attack from the Soviet Union. This included children who received lessons from Bert the Turtle on how to “duck and cover” to protect themselves. In this program, students view 1950s civil defense artifacts and vie for supplies in a fallout shelter game.

Constitution Day

Grades 4-5          3 hours



Join us in the month of September to celebrate Constitution Day at the Eisenhower Presidential Library! Students learn about the three branches of government, with special emphasis on the Executive Branch and several examples of President Eisenhower's utilization of the Constitution. The program encourages students to develop habits of good citizenship for America’s future.

Dear Mr. President

Grades 3-8          1 hour



Students are never too young to practice the American right to share their concerns with elected officials. In this program, students analyze children’s letters to President Eisenhower, noting their purpose and topics of the 1950s—from Elvis’s haircut to civil rights. They then practice civic engagement by writing their own letter to the current President of the United States about an issue that concerns or interests them.

I is for

Little Ike









WW II Kids







duck and cover


Const Day



Dear Mr. Pres

Go to our Plan your Field Trip page, when you are ready to book a program.


6th - 8th GRADES

(-ish. We often customize our programs to fit the level you need, so don't hesitate to ask.)

Attic Artifacts: 101st Airborne

Grades 6-8          1 hour



Following World War II, many Americans kept souvenirs of lost loved ones or their time in the war. Many of these articles were stored in boxes or trunks and then tucked away in attics, basements, and garages for decades. In this program, students critically evaluate images, documents, and a variety of artifacts from the 101st Airborne’s part in the D-Day invasion and liberation of Europe.

Use it Up, Wear it Out, Make it Do, or Do Without

Grades 6-8          1 hour



Every aspect of American life was focused towards winning during World War II, and everyone tried to do their part to support the Allied troops. Students handle primary sources like ration books and propaganda posters to learn how kids on the home front helped fight the war. Then, students play a board game that immerses them in the rationing and recycling programs that helped our troops win the war on the home front.

Code Talkers

Grades 6-8          1 hour



All of the countries involved in World War II had top-secret military information that had to be hidden from their enemies. For this reason, numerous tactics were used to disguise messages. In this program, students explore the Code Talkers, Native American men who served in the U.S. military and used their native languages to create codes that were never broken, even after the end of the war.

Paint Like Ike

Grades 5-12          3 hours



Join us for a hands-on lesson that combines Eisenhower, history, and art. Shortly before D-Day, Ike outlined instructions for the most comprehensive effort in history by an army to fight a war while also trying to minimize the damage to art, commonly known as the Monuments Men.

Not long after World War II, Ike took up the hobby of painting and enjoyed it throughout the rest of his life. Students will view several of Ike’s works and “paint like Ike” to complete one of his landscapes.

This program is funded through a generous grant from the Robert E. and Patricia Schmidt Foundation.

Holocaust: From a Name to a Number

Grades 7-12          1 hour



Students will learn how individuals were dehumanized as their name was replaced with a number or triangle, and that General Eisenhower made certain those war crimes were documented so those responsible would be held accountable. Most importantly, students learn about the Holocaust through the voices of survivors and realize that behind every number was a person with a name not to be forgotten.

inHUMANITY and the Holocaust

Grades 7-12          2 hours



As Nazi forces terrorized Europe with its Final Solution, many other brave individuals found ways to bring salvation or solace to those being persecuted. Through the unique story of the Terezin concentration camp, students will learn how resistance, altruism, and art saved lives and proved that one person can make a difference.  They will then paint a ceramic butterfly as part of The Butterfly Project, an international initiative to honor the 1.5 million children killed  in the Holocaust.





Use it Up



Code Talkers





paint like ike






Name to #




Go to our Plan your Field Trip page, when you are ready to book a program. 

9th - 12th GRADES  

(-ish. We often customize our programs to fit the level you need, so don't hesitate to ask.)


Primarily Omaha Beach

Grades 9-12          1 hour



It is said that the defeat of Nazi Germany was sealed on Omaha Beach. One hundred and sixty-thousand troops landed within 24 hours on a 50-mile front. Students are introduced to the overall objective of D-Day and how its story is preserved through primary sources. They then apply that knowledge through examination of documents and artifacts from Omaha Beach.

Advise the President: Project Solarium

Grades 9-12     1.5 hours



Shortly after taking office, President Eisenhower needed to decide how the U.S. should confront Soviet Communist expansionism. In this program, students recreate Eisenhower’s Project Solarium to analyze primary sources, discuss and debate the merits of three options, and advise the president of their recommendations.

Student Document Research: In Conclusion

Grades 9-12          time required varies



Are your students ready for in-depth research to use for a paper, speech, or project? The Eisenhower Presidential Library has Student Research Files on nearly 50 topics related to Ike’s life and times. Each file contains copies of documents and images from the Eisenhower archives that can fit your classroom needs.

Or, If you want a fully-prepared project, we offer In Conclusion: A Research and Informative Speech Project. It is perfect for team-teaching of English and History classes or to encourage students to participate in History Day. It was a 2002 Winner of Archivist of the United States Achievement Award for Outstanding Contribution to the National Archives. 

Desegregation in Little Rock

Grades 11-12          2 hours



By 1957, the Civil Rights Movement was in full swing. Eisenhower had desegregated Washington D.C., and Brown v. Board of Education declared “Separate but Equal” unconstitutional. That fall, nine African American students became heroes in the cause of racial justice. Through simulations and primary sources, this program brings to life the pivotal events from the 1957-58 school year in Little Rock, Arkansas.

D-Day Deception

Grades 10-12          1.5 hours



The best deception is attained by feeding an opponent with falsehoods which he wants to believe. Using code names such as Fortitude, Bodyguard, Quicksilver, and Double-Cross, General Eisenhower commanded a series of covert operations that played a crucial role in the victorious Allied invasion of Europe. Students examine primary sources to gain an understanding of D-Day deception plans.

The Red Scare:  Spies Among Us?

Grades 11-12          1.5 hours



Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were convicted of passing secrets to the Soviet Union in 1945 and sentenced to death. Controversy surrounded the case as many claimed the decision was the result of Cold War hysteria rather than facts. In this program, students examine primary documents from people both inside and outside of the Intelligence Community, and then examine President Eisenhower's decision of whether or not to grant executive clemency to the Rosenbergs.



Omaha Beach







in conclusion






Little Rock






red scare

Go to our Plan your Field Trip page, when you are ready to book a program.

Thinking Thursdays
  • Every Thursday during the school year, IKEducators provide live, online programs targeting different grade ranges.

  • CLICK HERE to view our current Thinking Thursday program offerings.

  • Please register at least 48 hours ahead of time to ensure that you will receive the necessary information to join this Zoom presentation. 

  • If you miss that deadline or are unable to utilize Zoom, you can still view the program live on Facebook and a recorded version will be available on YouTube within a few days. 


Go to our Plan your Field Trip page, when you are ready to book a program.





Our campus includes five buildings. All are open from 9 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. daily, except Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day. 

NOTICE: Effective Friday, March 13 at 5 pm. CDT: Eisenhower Presidential Library closed to public.

Boyhood Home

Boyhood Home


Grades K-12          Requires 30 minutes

Tours through the Ike's boyhood home are only by reservation and will have a guide both inside and outside the house. An IKEducator will provide primary source photographs and maps along with additional information before or after students tour the home. This encourages them to imagine life for “Little Ike” and his family in the early years of the 20th-century. No indoor plumbing or television??!! What??!!

Place of Meditation

Place of Meditation


Grades K-12         15 minutes

Codenamed OPLAN KANSAS, the funeral ceremonies for President Eisenhower brought the world to Abilene’s doorstep. Groups are welcome to independently visit the final resting place of Ike, Mamie, and their first son, or IKEducators are available upon request to provide additional information.

Gift Shop and Visitor's Center

Visitor Center Orientation Video 


Grades 5-12          30 minutes

Your field trip will begin at the Visitor’s Center, located on the site of the former Lincoln Elementary School, where “Little Ike” attended school. In addition to a video that provides an overview of Dwight D. Eisenhower’s life, the Visitor Center includes:

  • Admissions Desk 
  • IKEducation Classroom Space
  • Gift Shop
  • Restrooms
Statue and Pylons 600x400

Statue and Pylons


Grades K-12          15 minutes

The bronze statue of General Eisenhower in the center of campus, and the Pylons on the east end of campus, are great places for a class photo.

Check out our “Flat Ike” activity for 3rd - 5th graders which focuses on the statue.

Library bison

Presidential Library


Grades K-12          

The library is part of the National Archives and Records Association. It is a working archive that houses 26 million pages of primary source documents, along with media for researchers to access and conduct research. Middle and high school students participating in National History Day or our In Conclusion Research and Speech Project can utilize the archives and research room. An indoor courtyard is frequently used for IKEducation programs or lunches. 

student with pencil in museum

Presidential Museum


Grades K-12          

We can’t wait for students and teachers to explore the fully-renovated Eisenhower Presidential Museum! Teachers can facilitate grade level learning guides on their own, or an IKEducator will introduce and conclude the activity. 

Go to our Plan your Field Trip page, when you are ready to book a program.