Educational Visits


As part of the process in “reforming the soul,” inmates practiced a daily regimen of religion, education, and the cultivation of a skill or trade. Inmates were expected to attend classes while incarcerated and many obtained their GED before being discharged. In a merchandise catalogue created by the Reformatory in 1913 to promote the items manufactured by inmates, the Reformatory is referred to as “The University of Another Chance.”  For many, this was certainly the case.

While the inmates have gone, there is still much to learn from the Reformatory. Education is a major component of the Preservation Society’s mission. Each visit allows for the opportunity to create a dialogue and in doing so, we open the door for a larger conversation on the cultural significance of this facility and the history of confinement in the United States.

We encourage Educators to utilize the curriculum materials provided below. These items will assist your students in understanding the Reformatory’s timeline and will prepare them for a visit so they can engage with the space as an educated viewer.

Educational Tours can be arranged by contacting the Administrative Office at Special rates apply for groups of 20 or more.

book in cell

For more information on activities and primary sources to compliment a visit to the Ohio State Reformatory, please send an email to with the following information:

  • Name
  • Name of School
  • Grade
  • Subject Taught
  • Contact Information

All activities include Ohio State Educational Standards for:

  • Social Studies:  Grades 8 through 12
  • Language Arts:  Grades 7 through 12
  • Math:  Grades 5 through 10

Download educational materials: