Early Childhood Programs
Get your child off to a wild start in one of our
Early Childhood Education programs!
For 10 months to 2 year olds (with parent)
Stroller Buddies presented by Kimberly-Clark Corporation at the Dallas Zoo
Each 6-week session is offered on Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday from 9 – 10:30 a.m. beginning Feb. 20, Feb. 21 & Feb. 22. Note: There is no class during the week of Spring Break (March 12-16).
During playtime, children use a variety of natural materials to connect to nature and explore with their senses, cultivate their imagination, problem solve, and develop language and motor skills in the process. Children will have the freedom to choose from a variety of activities and let their creativity soar! The playtime portion of the program is a great opportunity to spend some quality time with your child and mingle with other adults. Healthy snacks will be provided.
This class is designed for one child per adult. A maximum of two children may be enrolled per adult. Only registered participants may attend this class.
Cost Per 6-Week Session:
Zoo Member: $48/child; $48/adult
Non Member: $60/child; $60/adult
Drop-Off program for children ages 5 to 8
Wild About Art
Calling all creative animal lovers! Your blossoming artist, ages 5-8 years, will explore their creative side using a variety of materials and art techniques while being led in an animal-inspired project by a Dallas Zoo instructor. Participants will also experience a different Zoo tour and enjoy an up-close animal encounter with each session. Sign up for one class or sign up for all to experience a truly WILD time!
Sessions are offered on select Sundays from 1 – 3 p.m.
Now open for registration:
- Feb. 11 – Foil Impressionism: Aztecs carved stone and dedicated it to their principal deity, the sun. Students tour the Zoo focusing on animal shapes and colors to create foil impression animal inspired art.
- March 4 – Frida Kahlo: Students will tour and learn about our closest relatives that live on the Gorilla Trail. Like Frida Kahlo, students will create self portraits that include objects and symbols that personally represent themselves.
- April 8 – Stained Glass: Focusing on this style of Gothic Art, students will tour the Savanna and learn how light interacts with the animals and their exhibits. Students will create savanna inspired stained glass artworks.
- May 20 – Andy Goldsworthy: Students will learn about land sculpture and art as they create site art from natural materials found at the Zoo. Pictures will be taken of the art and framed in uniquely student-created frames so we can leave our nature art for others to enjoy.
Online registration required. Registration closes 24 hours prior to the session date. The cost of the program includes the child’s admission into the Zoo and covers all art supplies.
Cost Per Session:
Child Zoo Member: $15/child
Child Non Member: $20/child
For children ages 3 – 5
Each 13-week session is offered on Fridays from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Preschool Safari offers children truly wild experiences during our full-day program held from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. on Fridays. Our student-centered learning features opportunities to explore a Zoo with over 2,000 animals to discover. Weekly topics and themes will change to explore animals from all over the globe and child interests. Our overall focus for the 2017-2018 program year is Textures, colors, and patterns.
Preschool Safari participants will experience:
- Nature Play and Exploration
- Zoo-Themed Dramatic Play
- Animal Inspired Stories
- Nature and Animal Art
- Music and Movement
- Up-Close Animal Encounters
- Animal Enrichment Projects for the Dallas Zoo Animals
Spring Semester: Feb. 16 – May 18
- No class during Spring Break (March 16)
Cost Per 13-Week Session:
Zoo Member: $390/child
Non Member: $490/child
The spring semester of Preschool Safari is sold out.
About Our Early Childhood Programs
Weekly themes correlating to areas of the Zoo and Aquarium are student-centered and designed to focus on students’ expressed interests when possible. Parents will receive updates regarding weekly topics throughout the duration of the program.
Walk-up registrations will not be accepted. Registration closes one week prior to the first day of the session.
Toilet Training: All Early Childhood Learning participants, in classes without parents, must be completely toilet trained (requiring no assistance in the bathroom). Our definition of toilet trained means that the child is not wearing pull-ups and is able to manage his or her own clothing by him or herself. We highly suggest sending your child to Pre-K in elastic-waisted pants or shorts.
Animal Handling and Safety: To ensure the safety of our animals, we cannot guarantee any individual animal or class of animals. Just like people, animals sometimes have a bad day or are sick and not available. There may be opportunities for children to safely touch selected educational animals in the classroom. Please note, however, the final decision will be at the sole discretion of the animal handler and based on many factors including animal safety, group size, and behavior.
Cancellation Policy: This is a non-refundable final sale. Enrollment fees are not pro-rated and are due in full at registration. Credit will not be issued within two weeks of start date of program. The Dallas Zoo and Children’s Aquarium at Fair Park reserves the right to cancel or change any program for reasons we deem appropriate. Programs will take place rain or shine. Programs that have not met the minimum number of participants within two weeks of the scheduled program date may be cancelled. In the event that we cancel your program, a full refund will be issued and individuals will be contacted directly. Credit may be used for any education program or camp at the Dallas Zoo or Children’s Aquarium at Fair Park. All changes or cancellations must be submitted in writing to Education@DallasZoo.com.
The Education Office is open Monday-Friday during regular Zoo hours. Contact us at Education@DallasZoo.com or 469.554.7300