Education

Zoo virtual Programs

Join the Topeka Zoo for virtual learning opportunities! Scroll down this page to "Available Programs" and pick out a theme you'd like. We can modify it to your classroom, time limits, and needs. Don't see a theme you're looking for? We can create something new for you too! All lessons will be filmed live with audiences.

virtual class options & Pricing

  • 30-minute class: Meet three Topeka Zoo education animals for a 25-minute lesson and 5 minutes for audience questions. Class can be NGSS curriculum-focused. Cost: $70
  • 60-minute class: Meet five Topeka Zoo education animals for a 50-minute lesson and 10 minutes for audience questions. Class can be NGSS curriculum-focused. Cost: $95
  • 30-minute behind-the-scenes tour: Choose one larger Topeka Zoo animal, see their enclosure, and learn all about them! Cost: $70
  • 60-minute behind-the-scenes tour: Choose two different, larger Topeka Zoo animals, see their enclosures, and learn all about them! Cost: $95
  • 60-minute zoo tour: Join Topeka Zoo Education Staff as they walk you through the zoo to see what the animals are up to! Cost: $95

Maximum participation is 100 participants. All virtual programs must be scheduled between 8:00am-5:00pm Monday-Friday.

For more information or to schedule a virtual program, contact our education department at (785) 368-9137 or rrost@topeka.org.

Zoo in-person Education Programs

Topeka Zoo offers a variety of educational programs to complement your classroom curriculum. Programs are offered in one- or two-hour blocks.

in-person class Pricing

  • One-Hour Programs hosted at the Zoo - $75
  • Two-Hour Programs (zoo only) - $145 flat fee for groups of 29 or less; $5/person for groups of 30 or more.
  • Any additional consecutive programs after the first hour are $35 for a half hour and $75 for an hour. You may not book a program for less than an hour.
  • There is an additional $35 fee for weekend and evening (after 5:00pm) programs.

For more information or to schedule a program, contact our education department at (785) 368-9137 or rrost@topeka.org.

In-Person Zoo2U Programs

Let us transform your classroom, library, retirement center, or organization meeting into an exotic encounter with our Zoo2U program. Zoo2U programs include a presentation, educational games, interaction with a live animal, and discussions related to a specific animal or zoo topic.

Our animal visitors can include:

  • A variety of invertebrates–including tarantulas, scorpions, millipedes, and more!
  • A variety of reptiles and amphibians–including several frogs, lizards, snakes, turtles, tortoises, and an alligator!
  • Several small mammals–such as a skunk, an opossum, an armadillo, and a hedgehog! 
  • Birds of prey–including a screech owl, turkey vulture, and hawk!

Pricing:

Zoo2U is $115 for an hour-long program. Any additional consecutive programs after the first hour are $35 for a half hour and $75 for an hour. You may not book a program for less than an hour. Travel outside of the Topeka City limits will incur an additional charge for gas.

There is an additional $35 fee for weekend and evening (after 5:00pm) programs.


To schedule a Zoo2U visit, contact our Education Department at 785-368-9137 or RRost@Topeka.org!

Field Trips

Bring your crew to the zoo!

Enjoy a day of education and fun at the Topeka Zoo & Conservation Center. The zoo is easily walkable and accessible to groups of all ages. We offer plenty of spaces to meet and classroom experience.

  • Groups of 15 or more are eligible for group rates.
  • Must register 48 hours in advance of your trip.
  • Full admission must be paid before entering.
  • No outside food or drinks.
  • Box lunches are available with advance notice.

Fill out a group discount form here or call 785-368-9161 to schedule your trip.  To schedule an education program please call 785-368-9137.

Available programs

1 Hour

2 Hour

Don't see what you are looking for? No problem! Our Education Department can adapt your desired curriculum into a program.

Monarch Butterfly Education & Tagging Class

How does it work?  This class is held at the Kansas Museum of History and is broken up into two parts. The first portion is an indoor, interactive education program where students learn about monarch butterflies, their importance, and how to catch them. The second part is outdoors in the museum’s prairie, where kids will get nets to catch, tag, and release monarch butterflies!

Age: This class can be modified for K-12 classrooms, as well as scout groups or any other interested parties.

When: Any Monday-Friday from September 16th-30, 2020

Time: This class is two hours long. You can choose between these times: 9:00-11:00; 9:30-11:30; 12:00-2:00; 12:30-2:30.  Private evening classes (5:30-7:30) can be scheduled, but required an additional $35 fee.

Cost: If you have 29 or less people, then the cost is a flat fee of $145. If you have 30 or more people, then the cost is $5/person. The $5/person fee includes students, parents,  and additional adults/children. Teachers, paras, bus drivers, and scout leaders do not need to pay for the class.

Museum admission not required. If you'd like to tour the museum before/after this class, additional fees will apply.

Contact: Rachael Rost at 785-368-9137 or RRost@Topeka.org with questions or to set up a class!

Teacher Professional Development Opportunity

National Geographic Education Certification: Phase 1 Workshop

Join the Topeka Zoo and Conservation Center as they offer a unique professional development opportunity partnering with National Geographic! The Topeka Zoo is hosting a workshop for area educators to complete Phase 1 of National Geographic's Educator Certification Program. Upon completion of the Phase 1 in-person, educators are then invited to complete Phases 2 and 3 online.

By completing this Educator Certification Program, you gain access to National Geographic's online educator community to network and share resources with thousands of educators around the world! Only through certification do you have the opportunity to apply to the Grosvenor Teacher Fellowship, a life-changing professional development opportunity involving a 10-14 day expedition. Finally, you will be part of the National Geographic network and may be asked to partner with them for other opportunities! Your administrators will be notified of your completion of the Educator Certification Program.

The workshop will be led by the Topeka Zoo's Education Specialist, Rachael Rost. Rachael is a 2017 Grosvenor Teacher Fellow, a certified National Geographic facilitator, and a member of National Geographic's Kansas Advisory Council. She has been teaching at the zoo for six years.

Date and Time: Fall 2020 at the Topeka Zoo (We are doing the exact same workshop twice this day--once in the morning and again in the afternoon. You can sign up for either session.)
Cost: Free! Includes admission into the zoo as well.
Who is this for: PreK-12 formal and informal educators, pre-service teachers, paraprofessionals, administrators, and more!
Questions? Contact Rachael at 785-368-9137 or rrost@topeka.org. Also visit the National Geographic Educator Certification Program website for Frequently Asked Questions. Pre-registration is required. 

Preschool Zoo Time

A special program designed for preschool age children ages 2-5. The program includes a story, live animal encounter, and craft.

DATES: First Friday of the month, March-November

TIME: 10:30-11:00 a.m.

LOCATION: Gary K. Clarke Education Center

COST: $2 per child. Requires paid Zoo admission

Parents are admitted free to Preschool Zoo Time with paid Zoo admission.

Registration is not required.

March 6; April 3; May 1; June 5; July 3; August 7; September 4; October 2; November 6

Discovery School Program

This program is designed to provide an up-close and personal encounter with science concepts, vocabulary, and interactions with the zoo. The first hour will feature a PowerPoint presentation and live animal encounter, while the second hour will be highlighted by an activity (craft, game, scavenger hunt, etc.).

DATES: Third Wednesday of each month (March's class is on March 25*.) 

2020: January 15, February 19, March 25, April 15, May 20 (break for June, July, August)

The March 25th Discovery Homeschool Class has been cancelled.

TIME: 1:00-3:00 p.m.

LOCATION: Gary K. Clarke Education Center

COST: $5/child ages 3+. Registration is not required. Requires paid zoo admission.

Scout Workshops

Earn a badge at the Topeka Zoo!

Girl Scouts

Daisy Workshops: 5 Flowers, 4 Stories, 3 Cheers for Animals

Brownie Workshops: Wonders of Water Journey; Bugs Badge; Senses Badge

Junior Workshops: Animal Habitats Badge; Gardner Badge

Cadette Workshops: Night Owl Badge; Animal Helpers Badge; Trees Badge

Senior Workshops: Voice for Animals Badge

Ambassador Workshops: Water Badge

Boy Scouts

Bird Study Badge

Environmental Science Badge

Fish and Wildlife Management Badge

Insect Study Badge

Mammal Study Badge

Nature Badge

Reptiles and Amphibians Badge

Pricing for scout workshops:

- One-hour live animal education program at the zoo: $75

- One-hour live animal education program at your facility: $115

- Two-hour class at the zoo (1st hour is a live animal education program and 2nd hour fulfills the requirements of the badge): $145 flat fee for groups of 29 or less; $5/person for groups of 30 or more. This cost applies to ALL guests, including scouts, troop leaders, parents, and additional siblings/guests.
- There is an additional $35 fee for weekend and evening (after 5:00pm) programs.

- Travel outside of the Topeka City limits will incur an additional charge for gas.

 

Classes at the zoo do NOT include zoo admission. Paid admission required to tour the zoo.

To book a program, please contact the Education Department at 785-368-9137 or RRost@Topeka.org.