“It’s a zoo!” often refers to confusion and disorder. But for some of us, the word zoo means a place to see animals. While I am sure there is a certain amount of confusion and disorder within most zoological parks, I prefer the bend towards the joy-filled, exposure side of zoos.
With Zoo Keepers Week July 21-27 this seemed the perfect time to share a music and activities related to the topic for both young and old.
For those with Preschoolers
Taking a child to the zoo can be a wonderful way to expose them to different animals. There are lots of fun ideas for explore animals before or after a trip to the zoo. A few are:
- Let’s Go to the Zoo – Super Simple Learning
- Five Sea Lions – Jason Didner and the Jungle Gym Jam
- Going to the Zoo
- Preschool Express has lots of zoo partner songs.
- Concordia Preschool has songs and fingerplay.
These and more resources are pinned for you to enjoy.
Many zoos such as the Smithsonian’s National Zoological park, have images, facts about animals and live cams. Explore what is featured.
Older adults might enjoy conversing about various types of zoological parks along with their history. How about debating the pros and cons of zoos? Animal Planet has some starter facts.
Listen to Carnival of the Animals by Camille Saint-Saëns. Play a portion asking what animal they think it depicts and why. Do participants feel at least some aspect of each animal was captured by the music? Also share the Ogden Nash poems about this work. Have the participants write their own poem about one of the animals. (The Muncie Symphony Orchestra has compiled this in one place.)
Other fun ideas!
There are so many fun ideas that can cross ages.
- Hold an instrument petting zoo. Which instrument would you relate to a particular animal?
- Animal crackers. Sort them, create teams according to which one people pull out, discuss which animals are included, reminisce on old packaging.
- Tropical drinks. Think smoothies, tastings.
- Drumming.Use the rhythm of animal names and have some fun.
- Story telling about animals. Traditional stories such as “The Tiger’s Whiskers” and some you make-up.
- Animal guessing games. Online or with your own clues.
It’s a zoo out there! Have fun exploring.