• 2024-2025 School Program Reservations

    We are currently not taking 2024-2025 school program requests.  Check back soon, or contact schoolprograms@nczoo.org with questions concerning programs.

  • Tier 1 Counties

    North Carolina Zoo is proud to join Governor Cooper’s Hometown Strong Initiative by providing school programs at a reduced rate for Tier 1 Counties.

EDventures at the Zoo

School Bob

On-Site Programs

Looking for a wild experience for your students? The North Carolina Zoo offers a variety of engaging educational programs for school groups visiting the Zoo. These programs enrich student learning about animals, the need for healthy habitats, and the actions they can take to help protect and preserve Earth’s natural resources. We offer programs for both classes (30 or less people) and assembly size programs (up to 200 people). 


Class Size EDventures at the Zoo

These programs last 30 - 45 minutes and cost $75 each. These programs are designed for a maximum of 30 students and are themed around animal adaptations with live animal ambassador encounters as weather permits.


Assembly Size EDventures at the Zoo

These programs last 50 – 60 minutes and cost $115 each, or $165 for over 100 participants.  These programs are designed for a maximum of 200 students and are themed around animal adaptations with live animal ambassador encounters as weather permits.


To Schedule a Program

There is a minimum of four weeks notice for any program and full payment is due at least two weeks prior to the scheduled program date. For further information contact the North Carolina Zoo's School Programs Office via 336.879.7718 or email.

We are currently not taking 2024-2025 school program requests.  Check back soon, or contact schoolprograms@nczoo.org with questions concerning programs!



                                Available Programs

A Frog's Life

Best for upper elementary and middle school aged children, this program takes a look at the lifecycle of frogs, how they are beneficial, and what challenges they face in the wild.   

Amazing Adaptations

Amazing Adaptations is perfect for 6th grade students but can be adapted to almost any age group.  We look at how different animals are able to survive in different habitats with different stressors, making ties to real world examples to get students excited about adaptations but also to understand humans have adaptations as well!

Amphibian Alert

Alert, alert, amphibians are changing the world!  In this fast-paced program we will be spouting fun facts, being slammed by a heavy wow factor, and cause everyone (adults included) to think about the future and just how much these amphibians can change our own. 

Animal CSI

A classic “Who Done It” activity features different realistic “crime scenes” where students must use clues left behind by animals to decide who was there and what they were doing.  Along the way they will make observations to support evidence-based guesses as to what exactly has unfolded at the scene.  Since this activity heavily uses biofacts, it can be a great choice for colder months when animals may not be able to be used. Due to the hands-on nature of this program, we will not be able to adjust this program for virtual experiences.

Animal Tales

Each part of an animal tells a story, and we have many animal parts to explore.  Taking a creative approach, students will use different animal parts to determine the back story of the animal, much like archaeologists will use old bones to craft a story of the culture of that time.

Animal Wrappers

Not all animals look and feel the same.  Why are some things soft and other things slimy?  Together we look at the different "wrappers" of animals and use audience observations to explain adaptations.  Best for grades K-1.

Arctic Awareness

Our friends in the arctic can seem otherworldly: how do they survive when it’s so different than what we are used to?  Explore the adaptations of different arctic animals and how these adaptations ensure their survival even in the coldest winters.

Biodiversity Basics

Designed with 1st graders in mind, we look at the differences between different creatures, why they are present, and what would happen if any of these features changed.  This is a hands-on, fast paced option especially effective for students who have a hard time sitting still!

Bone Detectives

A fascinating introduction to the skeletal system of different animals and how the benefits of bones extend to humans as well.  This is a fabulous program for winter months when we cannot include live animals in our programs for their own safety!

Carolina's Coolest

When you think of the zoo, you likely think of elephants and giraffes and rhinos.  While we do have amazing African animals at the North Carolina Zoo, we also have animals that live here in North Carolina that you may have never seen!  We will talk about birds, reptiles, amphibians, and animals that can all be found right here in your backyard.

Extreme Living

These superheroes are able to survive extreme conditions!  What can live in a volcano?  What can survive icy waters?  What can live without a drop of water?  This program will be sure to bring some cool facts to share with your friends.

Feet, Paws, and Claws

The different feet, paws, and claws of different animals serve a purpose, but why do they all look so different?  Discover the differences between our toes.

Fossil Fun

Awaken the paleontologist in everyone at this hands on, play based exploration of everything from dinosaurs to creatures in our backyard.

From Eggs to  Legs

This program is geared specifically for 2nd graders to learn about different life cycles and how they compare and contrast with each other.

Investigating Invertebrates 

Enter the world of Inverts and how complex they can be.  This program has modifications to fit the needs of multiple age groups, and offers an up close and personal look at invertebrates, what they are, and how they are beneficial.

Magical Metamorphosis

An older student look at metamorphosis, which extends far beyond just caterpillars to butterflies and tadpoles to frogs.  Reignite students’ love for learning and all things science with this simple yet impactful hands-on program, perfect for grades 5-8.


All Science starts with using our senses!  Together we will us our senses to observe the senses of other animals at work!  This program keeps the wow factor, is fast paced, and great for students of all ages, as student observations lead the discussion.

Nature's Mythbusters

Can you run in a zigzag to avoid an alligator?  Do snakes eat their tails?  Can owls really turn their head 360 degrees?  Do vampire bats really suck our blood?  Join us in answering the crazy questions you may have never thought to second guess!

Organism Organization

Levels of organization is a crucial concept taught in seventh grade that shapes their understanding of biology as they continue their education.  Solidify understanding with this program, showing exactly how levels of organization work, and seeing multiple creatures at all levels.

Scoop on Poop

The kids keep whispering about it, so why not have a program about it?  Our number one question from little children is about poop, so instead of shushing them and telling them to ask something more appropriate, why not use this as an avenue to learn new and exciting facts!

Snakes: Friend or Foe

Snakes are exciting but sometimes scary.  Many people will kill a snake on sight, but is this the best response?  Are snakes our friends or our foes?  Come all levels of snake enthusiasts, from the most hesitant ophidiophobe to the budding herpetologist, we have facts for all.

Things with Wings

Birds, bees, butterflies, and bats, come see what all the fuss is about these things with wings.  Why do some birds have wings without the ability to fly?  Why do some wings flap while others are steady and soar?  We explore this strange but extremely useful adaptation together, and end with a hands-on age appropriate activity to leave with.

Three Bears

Three bears are in North America: Black bear, Grizzly bear, and Polar bear!  How are they different?  Using the age old story of the three bears and goldilocks, we compare these three bears and point out just how different they really are.