Fredericksburg & Spotsylvania National Military Park

Fredericksburg & Spotsylvania National Military Park

Just For Kids

Be A Junior Ranger

There are two booklets for the Junior ranger Program, one for the Fredericksburg Battlefield, that includes Chatham, and one for Chancellorsville Battlefield, that includes the Jackson Shrine. The booklets are available for $3.00 at the Eastern National bookstores at Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville. When the participant completes the booklet, a park historian will review the answers and issue a Junior Ranger badge.

Web Rangers

For Kids Webrangers: As a WebRanger you will have one important job: to have fun while learning new things. Learn more.

Traveling Programs for Teachers

Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park has four traveling education programs now available to area teachers and students. These programs are curriculum based and designed to augment classroom studies of the American Civil War and help students meet Virginia Standards of Learning for Social Studies.

Traveling Trunk
A traveling trunk serves as a mini-museum, helping you bring a little bit of history to your classroom, scout troop, or other organization. The trunk contains reproduction uniforms, hats, equipment, and a filled haversack. It also includes photographs and books. Lesson plans that accompany the materials offer ways to use the trunk with small groups or the entire classroom. With teachers guidance, students can:

*handle, examine, and study parts of a reproduction Civil War uniform
* handle, examine and study reproduction Civil War equipment
*learn about soldiers from the North and South who participated in the war
*combine this information to explore the Battle of Chancellorsville

Traveling Haversack
A separate haversack is also available for exploring a soldier's camp activities. It is filled with a variety of materials exploring such topics as food, games, hygiene and correspondence. Lesson plans and teacher information accompany the program.

Traveling Maps
Two new traveling map programs have recently been added to the park's education program. This canvas floor map depicts the Spotsylvania and Fredericksburg area. It was created with funds through a Parks-as-Classrooms grant by a teacher during a summer internship. This program includes a large canvas floor map, labels, props, and lesson plans for a hands-on study of area geography and battlefields. A second map focuses on Stafford County and the Civil War's impact on that region. Both maps provide a view of the local road systems, major river, major town locations, and other points of interest from the 1861 to 1865 era. With the teachers guidance, students can:

*actively participate in lessons
*learn map orientation
*recreate battles
*compare and contrast present and past scenes
*study regional geography
*identify important landmarks
*walk or stand sock-footed on the actual map
*arrange or manipulate items on the maps

Other Educational Resources And How To Reserve
In addition to these traveling programs, the park has other resources available for assisting teachers in the classroom. These include teacher packets for planning field trips to the park, curriculum kits for exploring national parks and national historic places, and books and pamphlets for sale through the Eastern National Bookstore.

Call Janice Frye at (540) 786-2880 for information and to reserve the trunk, maps or haversack. The items are loaned out for a one-week period. There is no charge. It must be picked up at the Chancellorsville Visitor Center on Route 3, ten miles west of Fredericksburg and returned there. Please call in advance as the items are reserved on a first-come, first-served basis. The haversack and maps are in less demand. If you reserve any of the items and decide not to use them, please call and let us know so the items can be used by another teacher.

Plan A Field Trip

Before taking any field trip you should become thoroughly familiar with the layout of the park and decide exactly what you want the students to see. This can easily be accomplished with the help of the park staff. To arrange a field trip to the park, please call Janice Frye at (540) 786-2880. She is generally available on Wednesdays - Fridays between the hours of 9:00 and 5:00. See our webpage for tour options.

You need to finalize plans with the park staff giving such information as to the day and approximate time of the field trip and the grade and number of students to be expected. For large groups it will be necessary to arrange a staggered schedule so that no more than one bus arrives at a site at a time. This will prevent overcrowding and allow the students a more relaxed environment in which to enjoy their visit.

Students will learn and enjoy their visit more if preparatory activities are done first. Review with them the schedule for the day. Go over the rules and regulations with your students and chaperones. Discuss your expectations for their conduct on this trip. To assist teachers, see our webpage of lesson plans for visiting the park.


Should it be necessary to cancel your visit, please contact the park as soon as possible. Our staff is scheduled based upon the needs expected on the days that groups will visit.


Picnicking facilities are extremely limited and there are no shelters in the park. Lunch plans might include a stop at local fast food businesses or a nearby community park.

Other Resources

Below are links that might be helpful to teachers looking for resources.

National Park Resources for Teachers

Fredericksburg Newspaper's Website has an excellent webpage on teaching the Civil War. It contains information on the Virginia SOL's as well as useful information for teachers preparing lessons and students doing reports

Education World's Great Sites for Teaching about the Civil War. Each week new sites are selected.

Education World's Civil War Lesson Plans and Activities

Social Studies and History Standards for Virginia Public Schools