One of the world's best zoos is on the road! Bring the Zoo to your school, library, senior center or event. We offer unique educational experiences that are fun, interactive, memorable and engaging for children and adults. Our animal experts deliver programs that will educate, inspire and engage your group.
Our programs bring zoo artifacts and sometimes even live animals from our Zoo to you! View our offerings below.
Contact the Education Department at (402) 738-6905 or zoo2you@OmahaZoo.com for more information or to make a reservation.
Bring Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium to you! Our dynamic assemblies bring interactive and hands-on learning to large groups from school-age to adult-learners. Presented by our Zoo Outreach educators, these programs will take the audience on an entertaining journey with animal ambassadors, Zoo biofacts, and fun activities. Each assembly is designed to inspire, educate and engage participants so they can serve as lifelong stewards for animals, their habitats, and their conservation.
Book your program today by calling the Education Department at 402-738-6905. We require at least 3 weeks' notice to book.
Match your leaping skills against a tiger or your balance against a flamingo. Zoo educators will challenge participants to run, jump, race, and more as they learn all about the amazing animal athletes in our world! From the opening torch relay to the medal ceremonies, this program redefines “active learning” as kids test themselves against the abilities of animals from different habitats around the world. Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium will bring hands on experiences with amazing biofacts and animal ambassador visitors to help inspire a love of animals and a respect for the greater world around us!
I 💓 Animals
From polar bears in the Arctic to turtles in Nebraska, the future of the world’s animals is in our hands! Learn amazing facts about animals and discover what you can do to help your favorite animals at home and far away. Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium will bring hands-on experiences with amazing biofacts and animal ambassador visitors to help inspire a love of animals and a respect for the greater world around us!
Poop, vomit, slime, and even more amazing disgusting topics will be explored as we learn about the science behind some of the grossest (and coolest) animal traits. We’ll learn about mammal digestion and discover why scientists use poop to track animal migration patterns. We’ll discover why some animals throw-up their lunch, only to eat it a second time! We’ll all see just how gross (and amazing) animals can be. Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium will bring hands on experiences with amazing biofacts and animal ambassador visitors to help inspire a love of animals and a respect for the greater world around us!
NEW! Zoo Tales and Tails
Join us as we explore some of our favorite tales of animals and nature. Participants will learn how animal stories have inspired us to care for animals at the Zoo and promote conservation of animal homes around the world. Whether it's tales of pirates and sea monsters inspiring a love of the ocean and marine animals, or early exposure to Aesop's Fables and the mischievous Anansi the Spider teaching us valuable life lessons, Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium will bring interactive storytelling, hands on experiences with amazing biofacts, and animal ambassador visitors to help inspire a love of stories and a respect for the greater world around us!
NEW! Build-Your-Own Assembly
Does your school participate in the “One Book, One School” program? Do you have an idea for a program with a specific animal or conservation theme? Reach out to the Omaha Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium Outreach team and let us help you create a custom assembly. We can tie in conservation education, animal information, animal ambassadors, and more for your school or group.
Our STEM experts are coming soon to a classroom near you. We provide hands-on educational experiences that make science come alive and foster a lifelong love for conservation. These programs are correlated to state (NE and IA) standards as well as NGSS.
Classroom Experiences contain science projects, sensory experiences, and live animal ambassadors. Programs for first grade and up last 45-60 minutes.
Program Cost: $185.00/first program. $125.00 for additional, consecutive programs. Cost is per program, not based on time or number of students. Maximum class size is 30 students.
Book your program today by calling the Education Department at 402-738-6905. Programs require scheduling 3 weeks in advance to include an animal ambassador. Short notice programs are presented without an animal ambassador.
Not all bugs are the same, but they are important and worthy of appreciation! Students will discover the unique qualities of insects and arachnids as they examine specimens through magnifying glasses, build their own bug, and meet a living insect and arachnid up-close!
Students will discover different types of habitats and how different animals are adapted to survive in them through hands-on activities, live animals, and Zoo artifacts. Participants will learn about the interconnectivity and diversity of plants and will look at the challenges facing them as our world changes. Upon request, this program can focus on one or more habitat type, including deserts, oceans, wetlands, rainforests, grasslands, and tundra.
Ocean Life and Conservation
With more than 70% of the world covered by oceans, the biodiversity and health of this massive ecosystem is vital to the entire planet. Sharks, stingrays, sea turtles, and ocean invertebrates are explored as participants learn what it takes to be a marine biologist. Through zoo biofacts and hands-on experiments, participants will learn about the threats facing our oceans and discover simple things we can do in our own communities to help our oceans out!
Nebraska Native Species
From the massive bison to the tiniest of dung beetles, Nebraska is home to a vast and unique community of plants and animals. Learn about the prairie and wetland ecosystems, explore food chains, and discover what it takes to survive in Nebraska’s surprisingly diverse habitats. This program is designed to help your students gain a new appreciation for native Nebraska animals.
Learn about both large and fine motor skills of various animals, from prehensile giraffe tongues to the long-fingered Aye-Aye. Students will explore the different body structures that affect movement, including flight, swimming, swinging, jumping, climbing and slithering. This is an interactive program designed to get students up and moving.
Poop, vomit, slime, and even more amazing disgusting topics will be explored as students learn about the science behind some of the grossest (and coolest) animal traits. Mucus-covered gastropods, owl pellet dissection, and fecal matter exploration are just some of the important and gross hands-on experiences available in this classroom experience. *There is a $50.00 upcharge for this classroom experience if teachers wish to have each student dissect their own Owl Pellet.
Kindergarten: Turtles and the Environment
From the green sea turtle to the desert tortoise, turtles thrive in habitats around the world. Some are even able to modify their environment to meet their needs! Discover what turtles need to survive, and how your choices can help save turtles in your community and far away.
NCCRS‐S: K.7.2.A, K.7.2.B, K.7.2.C, .K.7.2.D
1st Grade: Animal Coverings
From the quills of a porcupine to the exoskeleton of a tarantula, different animals have different coverings. Students will explore fur, scales, feathers, shells and more as they get hands on and learn abut the different ways animal coverings offer protection and function.
NCCRS‐S: 1.6.2.A, 1.6.2.C, 1.6.2.D
2nd Grade: Habitat Exploration
3rd Grade: Life Cycles of Bugs
Students will learn about the different types of life cycles found among insects. Participants will investigate characteristics of insects and arachnids and examine specimens up close. They will recreate the life cycle and migration of the monarch butterfly and help design solutions to the destruction of their habitat.
NCCRS‐S: 3.7.2.A, 3.7.2.C, 3.7.2.D, 3.9.3.A
4th Grade: Clues in the Bones
Students will identify internal and external structures by comparing and contrasting the skulls and jaws of different organisms. Through hands on examination of both real skulls and replicas, participants will learn to recognize the clues in the bones for different animal adaptations. Students will become animal detectives and make predictions about how the animal lived when alive.
5th Grade: Food Webs
Students will explore the movement of energy through an ecosystem, from sunlight to plants and from prey to predator. Using zoo biofacts, including pelts, skulls, shells, and more, students will create a giant food web for a grassland ecosystem.
NCCRS‐S: 5.8.2.A, 5.8.2.B, 5.8.2.C
Albatross Bolus Investigation*
Albatross are one of the largest flying birds in the world. Even though they often live far from people, they are affected by our plastic pollution daily. Participants will investigate the contents of real albatross stomachs by exploring and dissecting an albatross bolus. Students will use their skills of data collection, math, and scientific questioning as they sort out the contents of the albatross stomach. *Due to the limited availability of albatross bolus, this program has limited availability.
Endangered Species: The Extinction Crisis and the Best Path Forward
This project-based program allows students to take on the roles of various stakeholders in a fictional land development opportunity. Students will explore the pros and cons of developing land as they look at the complex interdisciplinary world of animal and habitat protection. Through debate and research, participants learn that an “endangered species” does not simply mean that very few are left in the world and discover the causes of extinction.
This discussion-based program allows students the opportunity hear from a zoo educator about the different jobs required to keep a zoo running. From selling tickets at the front gate to driving the train, there are a lot more jobs at the zoo than just taking care of animals. Students will learn the realities of many zoo jobs, including keepers. Education advice, humorous stories of animal encounters, and the vast variety of career paths to work in a zoo environment are all part of this program.
Ocean Life & Conservation
We love early childhood learning! Each early childhood experience is specifically designed for classroom audiences from 3 years – kindergarten, with developmentally appropriate stories, activities, and animal encounters. Our experiences use a “circle time” format with our zoo educators leading the group in a welcome activity, a story, large-motor and fine motor activities, and hands-on opportunities with our biofacts and Animal Ambassadors. Early childhood programs last between 30-45 minutes.
Program Cost: $150.00/first program. $100.00 for additional, consecutive programs. Cost is per program, not based on time or number of students. Maximum class size is 20 students.
From jumping, swimming, flying, and slithering, we will explore the different ways animals move in the world. We will explore the different body structures that affect movement and get to mimic some of our favorite movement types.
Why does a wolf howl and lion roar? How does a cheetah say “good morning?” In this program, we will listen to and learn about the different ways animals communicate with other animals in their habitat.
One of our favorite things at the zoo is when a new baby is born! In this program, we'll meet some of our zoo babies and learn how animals care for their young in habitats all over the world.
Can You See Me? Animal Camouflage
Why do some animals have fur and others have feathers? How do their different coverings help them survive in the wild? In this program we will look at different animal coverings, from scales to skin, and learn how the different types of coverings protect the animals from predators and from their environment.
How many fish does it take to feed 100 penguins? How tall is a giraffe? In this program, we will learn the answers to those questions and more as we look at numbers, patterns, and early math-concepts we use at the zoo!
To learn more about our virtual field trips click below!
Virtual Field Trips
Whether you have the zoo as a long term provider, or for a single visit, the Zoo is the perfect mix of education and fun for your afterschool program.
“You demonstrated the VERY BEST in after school programming and practice” – Sandra, Ed. D.
Afterschool programs are SOLD OUT for 2021.
Afterschool and Summer Programs
When we visit your community, it is like a visit to the zoo for those who cannot attend. We will provide an update on the exciting new things at the zoo. The engrossing presentation uses pictures, videos, pelts and even live animals.
Senior Outreach Programs
If your event is looking for a guest speaker, call us to see if a zoo expert is available. Contact the Education Department at (402) 738-6905 or zoo2you@OmahaZoo.com for more information or to make a reservation.
Contact the Education Department at (402) 738-2092 or classes@OmahaZoo.com to reserve your Zoo-To-You trunk.