John Ball Zoo

Distance Learning

    Enjoy live, interactive zoo programs from your classroom or home. Programs are led by a Zoo educator and include a mixture of live presentations, interactive tours of the Zoo, and the use of biological artifacts and ambassador animals to make learning fun and interesting. Programs are continuing to be developed so please check back or feel free to contact us if you don't see something that relates to your curriculum.  

    Program Fees: $75/program


    Programs Available 


    Animal Enrichment - (3rd-8th grades) Discover how our zookeepers keep our animals physically and mentally active in their zoo habitats. Enrichment is an awesome tool to encourage natural behaviors like running, swimming, climbing, and puzzle-solving, and we'll see how animals respond with pictures, videos, and a live animal demonstration. When we're done, you'll get to design your own enrichment for the animal of your choice!
    MI Science Standards: 3-5-ETS1-1, 3-5-ETS1-2, MS-ETS1-2.
    Exhibit Design - (3rd-8th grades) Dive into the role of an engineer and discover what it takes to create a zoo exhibit.  We'll tour three of John Ball Zoo's exhibits up close to learn about animal, guest, and keeper needs. Then you'll become an engineer and create an exhibit of your own! 
    MI Science Standards: 3-5-ETS1-1, 3-5-ETS1-2, MS-ETS1-2. 
    Adaptations - (3rd-5th grades) Get an up-close look at the amazing physical and behavioral adaptations animals use to survive.
    MI Science Standards: 3-LS2-1, 3-LS4-3, 3-LS3-1, 3-LS3-2, 3-LS4-2, 4-LS1-1, 4-LS1-2, 5-LS2-1.
    Michigan Habitats - (2nd-3rd grades) Young scientists learn about native Michigan wildlife and their habitats as we explore the animals that live in John Ball Zoo's North American habitats. Learn what all animals need to survive while comparing and contrasting the animal's natural habitat vs. their habitat at the zoo. 
    MI Science Standards: 2-LS4-1, 3-LS4-3.
    Penguineering - (2nd-4th grades) Explore habitats and classification as it relates to Magellanic Penguins! Students will enjoy this interactive lesson that will challenge them to build their own penguin nests and test it against the environmental elements to see if their nests can make the cut. 
    MI Science Standards: 3-LS2-1, 3-LS4-2, 4-LS1-1, 4-LS1-2, 3-5-ETS1-1, 3-5-ETS1-2.
    Body Coverings - (Pre-K - 1st grades) Experience the furry, feathery and scaly side of the animal world and learn why animals have these amazing coverings. 
    MI Science Standards: K-LS1-1, 1-LS1-1.
    Please download and fill out the registration form below and email to
    For questions please contact