Everything you need to plan and book your zoo field trip in one place, including homeschool resources.


The steps below will guide you through the process of planning your visit, connecting your trip to your curriculum and preparing your students and chaperones for their time at the zoo.


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   Step 1: Education Rate Eligibility

   Step 2: Select Date(s) for Your Visit

   Step 3: Submit Your Registration

   Step 4: Receive Confirmation

   Step 5: Plan for Curriculum Connections

   Step 6: Gather Materials and Prepare for a Successful Visit



Out of respect for animals, other guests, and zoo grounds, we ask that students:

  • Stay with their adult chaperones and group at all times.
  • Stay on designated paths, viewing areas and grassy areas.
  • Do not throw food or objects into the exhibits.
  • Do not tap on glass or otherwise stress the animals.
  • Be quiet near exhibits.
  • Use recycling, compost and waste containers throughout the zoo.
  • No frisbees, balls, balloons or pets are allowed on the zoo grounds.



We look forward to seeing you at the zoo!

If you have additional questions, please contact the registration office at 206.548.2424 ext 2 or





Science Learning Experiences

Once you book your field trip, we recommend choosing a driving question to frame your zoo visit: 

Grades K-2: What do living things need to survive and thrive?

NGSS Standards Connection
Guide for Educators and Chaperones (coming soon!)

Grades 3-5: How do we design and create a better world for animals and people? 

NGSS Standards Connection
Guide for Educators and Chaperones (coming soon!)

If you are an educator new to NGSS, we highly suggest this short series of videos that demonstrates instructional strategies based on NGSS. Though these activities are classroom-based, the instructional strategies have informed the learning experiences  designed here at Woodland Park Zoo!

Using the Learning Experience framework:

  1. Before visiting, share the driving question with students and chaperones to have in mind as they explore the zoo. Discuss the question with students, brainstorming what they already know and want/need to know to help gather evidence related to the driving question. The more invested your students are in the question, the more motivated they will be to seek evidence during their zoo visit.
  2. Consider developing a worksheet or have students journal during their visit to record their observations and build their evidence so that they can discuss their explanations back in the classroom. Sample worksheets coming soon!
  3. While visiting, your students can observe animals, explore exhibits, read signage, talk with staff and volunteers, and attend programs (see Seasonal Learning Experiences program schedules below). From these experiences, students should come away with evidence to support their explanations that help to answer the driving question. They can also record any further questions they have related to the driving question for follow-up investigation.
  4. Following your visit, you can lead follow-up activities in the classroom based on student observations and experiences at the zoo. Engage your students in a discussion asking them to share their claims about potential explanations for the scientific phenomena addressed by the driving question and backing up their claims with evidence (the observations they made and information they gathered during their zoo experiences).
  5. At any point, please contact us if you need help planning your visit or to provide feedback on a previous visit! You can contact us at 206.548.2424 ext 2 or email


Seasonal Learning Experiences program schedules

  • Winter (November 18, 2017 - February 13, 2018): Please visit the Today at the Zoo page for the winter program schedule. For the most up-to-date information, please check the daily activities kiosk at the zoo entrance when you arrive.
  • Spring (February 14 - April 27, 2018): Engaging, hands-on programming that suppors the Next Generation Science Standards is available Wednesday, Thursday, and Fridays. Please see our Spring 2018 program schedule for additional information. 
  • Summer (May - September): Fill your day with keeper talks, animal encounters and more! Please see the Today at the Zoo page for the schedules (Available April 2018). For the most up-to-date schedule, please check the daily activities kiosk a the zoo entrance when you arrive. Please note: Our summer program schedule includes a variety of programs and experiences that schools can enjoy and learn from. However, summer programs and experiences are not designed to support formal science learning standards and driving questions, as are programs during the Fall and Spring. 

All programs are free with zoo admission or membership except where noted. Activities are subject to cancellation. For the most up-to-date information, please check the daily activities kiosk at the zoo entrance when you visit.

About the Learning Experiences

Woodland Park Zoo's Education Department has developed a new strategy for engaging schools in learning at the zoo. We no longer offer guided programs you can book for your class in advance. These changes have been made with input from local teachers, our experienced staff and volunteers, zoo colleagues across the country and regional science education experts, as well as by consulting the Washington State 2013 K-12 Science Learning Standards (Next Generation Science Standards - NGSS).




Self-Guided Visits

Homeschool groups are welcome to come to the zoo for self-guided field trips any time of the year. By registering three weeks in advance, homeschool groups can qualify for the reduced admission education rate (September 1 - March 31: $6.75/person; April 1 - August 31: $9.50/person). Please follow the steps at the top of this page to book a field trip.

Be a student scientist at Woodland Park Zoo!

Engaging, hands-on programming that supports Next Generation Science Standards is available on-grounds on select days in the fall and spring.

October 5 - November 17, 2017: Thursdays and Fridays
February 14 - April 27, 2018: Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays

For additional information about programs available on these days, please scroll up to the Learning Experiences section of this page.


Homeschool Days

We invite homeschool groups to register now for 2017-2018 Homeschool Days at Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle!

Friday, October 13, 2017
Thursday, October 26, 2017
Friday, November 3, 2017
Friday, March 2, 2018
Wednesday, April 4, 2018



The world we live in is a wonderful place! But we can make it an even better one, if we work hand-in-hand—or maybe hand-in-paw—together! At Woodland Park Zoo this fall, you can discover ways we can all improve the world for both people and animals.  Homeschool students and their families are invited to the zoo for a day of hands-on activities, staff-run discovery stations, animal programs and self-guided exploration of zoo grounds. Visit our on-grounds learning hub at the Beech Grove (near the South Entrance) to explore ways people around the world can and do live with wildlife.  Come explore the zoo and build on your students’ natural curiosity about animals!

All activities are included with zoo admission. Advanced registration is required to receive the discounted school visit rate ($6.75/person for October, November and March; $9.50/person for April). The zoo is open from 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m and you are welcome to remain on grounds for as much of the day as you like.

Please note when planning your day that activities offered for Homeschool Day will primarily occur in the morning and early afternoon.

Suggestions for connecting your zoo visit to your learning can be found in the Learning Experiences section of this page.

Additional logistics for the day can be found on our Homeschool Days FAQs.


For additional questions or assistance, please contact the registration office at 206.548.2424  ext 2 or

Our Mission

Woodland Park Zoo saves animals and their habitats through conservation leadership and engaging experiences, inspiring people to learn, care and act.


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Association of Zoos & Aquariums

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5500 Phinney Ave. N., Seattle, WA 98103   |  206.548.2500  |