Digital Resources From Museums: The Museum of Modern Art

The Education Techie reviews tech tools and websites that can help students and teachers. This week, the Techie is taking a look at some of the online educational resources offered by museums. Today's article explores the website of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA). Schools offering Art degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

moma logo

Founded in 1929, MoMA is one of the premier institutions devoted to modern art, a term that roughly refers to works created from the mid-1800s to the late mid-1900s. The Museum of Modern Art's collection also includes contemporary works (pieces made during the current time period); the museum's overseers make a continual effort to add relevant work to the collection.

Located in New York City, the museum hosts more than two million visitors a year, making it one of the city's most popular tourist attractions. The MoMA website has some really great educational resources for those who want to teach or learn about modern art. Here are some features that I find particularly interesting.

Online Collection

MoMA has more than 34,000 works of art from over 9,000 artists in its online database. The website is a great resource for images of and information on works of modern art, but teachers should be cautious about letting students browse the collection unsupervised. Works of modern art can occasionally be graphic or disturbing, though the online collection is by no means limited to works of this type. There is plenty of kid-friendly work in the collection.

moma collection online

If you're not looking for anything specific, you can browse around, viewing all of the images in the database or searching by medium. To find specific works, users can filter by time period, department (film, drawing, design, painting, etc.) and work type. If you're mostly concerned with getting images, you can restrict search results to include only records that include photos of works. There's also an index of artists and art terms, if you're interested in searching that way.

Modern Teachers

This section of the site provides K-12 teachers with lesson plans and other classroom resources. There are general guides for various modern art topics, including analysis of various time periods (starting with 1882-1900 and ending with 1961-2004), modern and contemporary Latin American and Caribbean art and the MoMA design collection. These guides include printable PDFs with images and written content directed at the teacher, rather than at students.

moma modern teachers

Lessons are grouped into categories like activities, themes and artists. The lessons themselves are pulled from the guides - this may just be a more efficient way for teachers to access specific teaching ideas. Because the guides and lessons are targeted to teachers to use as they see fit, I think it would be easy for educators to tailor material for a wide variety of classes, age groups and ability levels.


Students, teachers and non-academic art enthusiasts alike will probably find something to entertain and educate in this impressive online collection of audio, video and interactive features. Audio includes discussions with professionals, artists and educators about art, architecture and design, while videos touch on topics like visiting the museum.

what is a print?

My favorite part of this multimedia section is the inclusion of interactive elements. These components focus on art history and art-making topics, featuring titles like 'What Is a Print?' (pictured above). The section's interface is clearly designed for educational purposes, so teachers will likely feel comfortable incorporating content into lesson plans.

This is the third article in a series about digital resources from museums. Previously, the Techie reviewed online offerings from the American Museum of Natural History and Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History. Stay tuned for more of these articles from the Education Techie!

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
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  • Regent University

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    • Anywhere: Anjou, Laval, Longueuil, Montreal, Point Claire
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