A visit to the zoo can be a very enjoyable day out, but it can be a great place to learn too. For many people a zoo is the only place where they are able to view exotic animals within a fairly close distance. This allows guests to see some incredible animals in real-life and be able to witness animals displaying a variety of heights, colours, smells and sounds.
After working here for almost three years, the gracefulness of a giraffe, roar of a lion, power of a tiger, group relationships within the lemurs and strength of a rhino still amazes me. To enhance the learning experience which guests have when they visit us, we offer a range of keeper talks, shows, information signs and animal experiences.
These activities are all optional, therefore, they provide the guest with a choice of what they want to view and learn about.
Sometimes the guest might not realise they are consciously learning, but hopefully they will go home remembering at least one fact from the day which they did not know at the start.
For groups who do wish to purposely learn whilst they are here, we have an education team to deliver activities for visiting school groups, colleges and community groups.
Now that the new academic year has started, our zoo education activities are well underway. The activities can be in the form of guided tours of the zoo or indoor workshops.
Having a member of zoo staff leading a tour of the zoo means that they know which routes to take, are able to describe the animals within the zoo and answer the many bizarre questions which school children can often come up with.
This takes the pressure off of the teachers and makes sure that the children get the most out of their visit.
For groups which require a more focused topic, we offer a variety of indoor workshops within our Education Centre which are designed to be interactive by involving props, artefacts, games and sometimes live animals.
Our most popular topics are adaptations, rainforests and variety of life, but we offer lots more! Our team often receive great feedback from schools and many return year after year.