A World of Discovery - Great Lakes Zoological Society Conservation Center and Rescue - A Great Family Destination!

School Field Trips

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Animals Educating the World… One Child at a Time

Bring life science topics out of the classroom and into your student's hands through immersion learning programs at GLZS. For the price of admission, students will connect with wildlife and nature through up close and personal lessons featuring exotic and indigenous reptiles, amphibians and invertebrates. Our interpretive educational presentations and activities meet the Michigan science Grade Level Content Expectations (GLCEs) for all ages. Students will learn about topics including but not limited to: conservation, animal classifications, adaptations, habitats, organismal relationships, animal behavior and animal welfare.

GLZS hands-on interpretive educational presentations take place in the classroom and generally last 30-45 minutes. Following the presentation, students will explore the exhibit area while participating in age appropriate and topic specific activities. Choose from the grade-specific topics below or work with our education coordinator to tailor a program to enhance your classroom lessons. Combining hands-on presentations and zoo exploration, students are guaranteed a memorable learning experience!

The price of admission is:*

Age 2 and under are free
Ages 3-11 are $5.50
Ages 12 and up are $8.00
Seniors are $5.50

Memberships do not apply to field trips

*Note: Cost of the program is based upon attendance to the zoo with a minimum charge of $60 if there are less than eight children and two adults. Memberships and other promotions do not apply to field trips. We also ask that groups pay in one group payment.

Great Lakes Zoological Society World of Discovery Reptile Zoo Interpretive Educational Program Catalog Pre-K through 7th Grade

  • Pre-Kindergarten Lesson — Students will participate in a story-time session of The Mixed-Up Chameleon, by Eric Carle. After the story, students have a chance to see a chameleon up close, as well as a few other safe-for-youngster animals that they have the opportunity to touch and even hold. They finish their lesson by making a mixed up animal of their own.
  • Kindergarten Unit — During the unit, students will examine the basic needs of life, as well as compare living and nonliving things. They will ask the question of what it means to be "alive," as well as what organisms need to live.
  • First Grade Unit — First graders examine life cycles, by way of the egg. They'll get to see many different types of eggs, understand where they come from, and learn to associate eggs with babies and later forms of life. At the zoo, they'll see animals with different forms of life cycles from humans, and they will identify them within the zoo, as well as complete art projects on them in the classroom.
  • Second Grade Unit — Second graders will explore the relationships between plants and animals. They'll learn the importance of animals to plants, as far as pollination, how some animals other than bees pollinate plants, and learn the waggle dance of a bee.
  • Third Grade Unit — The third grade unit focuses on categorizing animals. The students will complete an investigation throughout the zoo by classifying the animals held within based on vertebrate/invertebrate, as well as reptile/amphibian/bird/mammal/invertebrate. Back in the classroom, students will share their favorite animal and classify it.
  • Fourth Grade Unit — "How do rabbits avoid being eaten?" Fourth graders will ask this question and many others as they explore the topic of survival techniques, and then catalog a list of survival techniques they can find around the zoo. For their final assessment, students will have to create their own creature with at least three survival techniques, as well as craft a short descriptive writing sample about the same animal.
  • Fifth Grade Unit — The fifth grade unit is one of our most exciting, where students look not only at animal adaptations, but also at their own. By the end of the unit, students will be able to answer why adaptations are vital to species survival, share the adaptations exhibited by one of the species at the zoo, and give purposes/benefits of that animal's adaptations.
  • Sixth Grade UnitProducing, consuming, and decomposing — which one are we? Sixth graders are going to examine the effects humans have on animal ecosystems, as well as create a food web depicting how an animal the student saw at the zoo interacts with other organisms in its ecosystem. The student will have to hypothesize how a human might affect that animal's ecosystem, even without ever coming into contact with the animal or knowing it exists.
  • Seventh Grade Unit — How do we pass our traits on to our young? When sixth graders examine heredity, they'll be asking and answering that question. Aside from investigating the traits that the animals bear themselves, students will be asked to complete an inventory of their own traits, examining their genetic background as it relates to their parents. Reptiles are prime examples of inheritable traits, and this lesson really hits home with the visit to the zoo.
  • Custom Unit Plans— Don't see a lesson that really fits with what you want? Let me know what you're interested in, and we can come up with something that fits your needs.
  • For more information on our field trips, to receive a copy of our individual curricula for each grade level, or to schedule your field trip with us, you can call our Education and Outreach Coordinator at 734-332-1628 or email at education@glzszoo.org.

    An interpretive educational program tailored to the appropriate age level Michigan Science Grade Level Content Expectations (GLCEs) with a nice cross discipline touch. The children are learning grade level content while in the exhibit and in the classroom.