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Mar 27, 2006

Edinburgh Zoo Summer School

Edinburgh Zoo Summer School from RZSS - Edinburgh Zoo  
Summer school runs for four weeks with 384 children aged 6 -14 years. Staffing is final year teaching students. The students are responsible for delivering the planned programme with specialist input from our education officers as required

Curricular based on a theme; this year was Asia and the year of the Monkey. A main focus was the Hindu festival of Dusshera. Using animals as a trigger, we explored ideas about how animals fit into a culture, the culture itself and species-specific conservation issues. Additionally, we aimed to raise the zoo’s profile within the growing community.

Apart from the normal classes and animal studies, this year included:
• Photography competition
• Making Indian Rangoli patterns
• Making Indian rakhi bracelets
• Large scale model making
• Animal handling
• Scientific observations (Babirusa behaviour study)
• Animal food preparation / enrichment (working closely with keepers)
• Indian banquet (sponsored by local restaurant)
• Final day concert (attended by parents)

From all possible perspectives, our summer school can be regarded as very successful.

Firstly, it complies with our mission which is “to inspire and excite our visitors with the wonder of living animals, and so to promote the conservation of threatened species and habitats”. Basing all our activities around the living animals, we have demonstrably excited and inspired our children (and their parents – see feedback sheets enclosed with application), extending their understanding of the living world, and encouraged them – through a wide variety of activities – to acre about the animals and habitats on which we focussed. 

Developed by:  RZSS - Edinburgh Zoo


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