Discovery Packs


Check out some fun!

Discovery Packs are hands-on educational kits available to teachers, day care providers, youth leaders, program directors, and families. Please call 605 978-7015 to reserve one or more Discovery Pack(s).

(Due to COVID-19, loan periods may be shortened.  For the safety of our patrons and staff, each pack will be quarantined for three days (72 hours) upon return, before it will be inventoried and sanitized. A refundable deposit of $20 per pack is required at pickup. Click here to view our loan policies. Link to Policies.)

Natural History

Mammoth HuntersMammoth Hunters
Grades 2 – 8

Ice Age giants used to roam the plains; bring them back with this pack! Students can see castings of actual mammoth bones and participate in fun classroom activities while learning about this extinct animal and its importance to prehistoric man. Background information and suggested activities are included in a teacher’s guide.


Furs and Bones
Fur and BonesPreschool – 8th Grade

Like our popular Buffalo pack, this pack gives students a multi-sensory learning experience. By exploring a selection of furs, hides, skulls, and other bones, your class can learn about the importance of regional animals to Native Americans and the fur trade. A teacher’s guide includes suggested classroom activities as well as information about the animals themselves and the fur trade.


ArchaeologyGrades 4 – 12

Introduce students to the wonders of archaeology. Along with reproducible handouts, the kit contains a mini-dig and a reconstruction project. A teacher’s guide is included as well.


FossilsGrades 3 – 12

Hands-on activities make this pack a big hit with students! Your class can learn about different types of fossils by creating their own molds and casts. A selection of genuine fossils is included as well. The teacher’s guide provides background information and complete instructions for class activities.


Mammal Tracks
Mammal TracksPreschool – Grade 5

This fun pack includes latex replicas of the front and hind feet of 17 species of North American mammals. Track identification sheets, user’s guide, and a reproducible activity booklet are also included.


Cofradia of Guatemala Grades 6 – 12
Cofradia of GuatemalaMaya in Guatemala Grades 4 – 12

Is your class studying Latin America? These packs are for you! A staff member did an exchange program in Guatemala and brought back videos, clothing, artifacts, photos, and books to share with you and your class. Learn about the Mayan culture and tradition, and how it is still alive in Guatemala today.



Native American Topics

Native American Quillwork
Native American QuillworkGrades 2 – 8

Your class will love discovering this almost forgotten craft. Students will learn about the traditional Lakota artform, and can even try their hands at a quilling activity. A selection of quills, quilled objects, photos, teacher’s information, and suggested activities complete this pack.


The Buffalo
The BuffaloGrades Preschool – 8th grade

Give your students a multi-sensory experience with this unique “touch” pack, which includes everything from a full robe and tallow soap to “milk teeth” and a bladder. The teacher’s guide includes information on the buffalo itself, its importance to the Lakota people, and places to see live buffalo today.


ParflechePreschool – 8th grade

Discover how Plains Native Americans made and used rawhide containers. This pack contains a parfleche and several items (reproductions) used in making a parfleche. The complete teacher’s guide includes suggestions on how students can create their own simulated rawhide container.


Picture Writing
Picture WritingGrades K – 6

This pack contains rubber stamps illustrating a variety of Plains Native American symbols used to record a tribe’s stories and events. The teacher’s guide includes background information on historic uses of picture writing and ideas for fun classroom activities.


Native American Games
Native American GamesGrades K – 6

Games helped Native American children learn skills for use in real life. Your students can experience many games played by early Plains Native Americans. Background information and game rules, as well as most objects needed to play the games, are included with this pack.



Local History

Historic GPS Hunt

This activity is a fun way to combine the history of our area with modern technology. The hunt includes various sites of historical interest throughout Minnehaha County. You are given coordinates to find each site; upon reaching the site, you can read about its history. The pack includes GPS unit, site coordinates, a history booklet, and a county map and hint booklet in case you get stuck!


Then and Now: Our Legacy
Grades 3 – Adult

Pictures tell the history of Sioux Falls from the 1860s to 1900 by comparing historical images of the city to contemporary images. Also included are a complete script and an 1881 Sioux Falls wall map. Then and Now is available in traditional slides or as a Microsoft Power Point presentation.


South Dakota
South DakotaGrades K – 8

Looking for a fun addition to your South Dakota history lessons? This new pack tests your students’ knowledge of state history. It includes historical information, state symbols, a homesteading game, fun classroom activities, and much more!


The American Flag
Grade K-5

The American flag is arguably the most important symbol of our nation.  Learn about its history and evolution, as well as flag etiquette and proper display of the flag.  A miniature of each official U.S. flag is included, as well as a full-size 50-star flag and teacher’s guide with suggested activities.


The WWI Doughboy-New!
Grade 5-Adult

This pack includes original uniform pieces of a U.S. Soldier during the first World War and descriptions of their use. The teacher’s guide also includes background information on the war and its effects on Minnehaha County.


Pioneer Activities

Homesteading Board Game
Grades 2 – High School

Students can learn about challenges and choices facing early pioneers on their journey across the prairie. From deciding which items to buy or pack, to letting chance, with the roll of a die, decide what illness or disasters may strike, players “live” the homesteader experience as they race across the board to be first to stake a claim. This pack contains a teacher’s guide, a game board, supply cards and game pieces.


Pioneer Items
Pioneer ItemsGrades K – 8

Modern conveniences make it hard to imagine what life was like for the pioneers. Your students can travel back in time as they explore objects used by pioneer families. This pack includes many hands-on items, including a coffee grinder, rug beater, and corn planter. Background information is included in a teacher’s guide.


Inkle Looms
Inkle LoomsGrades 2 – 8

Bring this fun weaving activity to your group. The pack includes looms, shuttles, background information, and complete instructions. All you need to provide is yarn!


Pioneer Clothing
Pioneer ClothingGrades K – Adult

“Why do they dress funny?” Do your students wonder why pioneers dressed so differently? Find out with this exciting new pack! Your students can learn about clothing worn by children during the late 1800s. This pack contains items for your students to discover and try on. A teacher’s guide with historical information about clothing styles and care is also included.


Historic Baseball
Historic BaseballGrade 2 – Adult

Baseball, our national pastime, has not always been the game we know today. Play the historic games that evolved into the modern form of baseball. The pack includes the rules for two early variations of baseball, background information and a time line. Equipment included: balls, bases, and bats. Gloves are not provided but are optional.


Pioneer Games
Pioneer GamesGrades K – 6

Discover how pioneer children created their own games from simple everyday objects! This pack contains a complete teacher’s guide including background information, game instructions, and most objects needed to play the games.


Ice Cream Making
Ice Cream MakingAll ages

This popular pack contains a hand-crank ice cream churn. The teacher’s guide provides directions, recipes, and background information.


Butter Churning
All Ages

This pack includes a churn, a wooden bowl, paddles, and a butter mold. Directions, recipes, activities, and other information are included in the teacher’s guide.


Candle Dipping
Grades 2 – Adult

This pack contains the basic equipment to start you and your group on their way to making hand-dipped candles. The teacher’s guide includes directions along with information on where to buy candle wax, how much to buy, a list of optional activities, and historical information about home lighting.