2016 Zoo Camp Descriptions
Pre-K – K to 1st – 1st to 2nd – 3rd to 4th – 5th to 6th – 7th to 9th
Printable Camp Schedule
Printable Class Descriptions
Classes are divided up by the grade level children will be entering in the fall. Each class level is labeled with a color. Children entering 1st and 2nd grade have a choice of a full-day (green) or half-day (yellow) camp. All of the Zoo’s classes incorporate California Life Science Standards
All grade levels, including Preschool will get the following experiences during Zoo camp:
- Silly songs and crafts
- Interactive lessons and games
- Touring parts of or all of the Zoo
- Interaction with Zookeepers
- Animal encounters with the Zoo’s Animal Ambassadors
- Making and/or watching a special enrichment for a resident animal or Animal Ambassador
Little Peeps : Pre-School, $35 per class
Each Little Peeps class is two hours long, from 9:30 to 11:30 am, and are designed for 3-to-5-year-olds with a caregiver. Little Peeps class themes are the same for the whole week, simply register for one day per week: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday or Friday.
Sight: June 7th, 8th, 9th, or 10th
Do you think you could read a magazine from across a football field? Do you know which animal can do that? Come on over to the Zoo to see for yourself!
Hearing: June 14th, 15th, 16th, or 17th
Do you hear the sounds of the Zoo? Hoots, roars, and ribbits? Join us to learn all about the sounds animals make, and about some animals with super hearing!
Touch: July 12th, 13th, 14th, or 15th
Some animals are scaly and some are soft. This week we will explore those textures together and see what other textures animals are covered in here at the Zoo.
Smell: August 2nd, 3rd, 4th, or 5th
Have you ever smelled a stinky tamandua or a hedgehog with smelly gunk on its back? Animals use scent and smell in different ways then we do to stay alive! Come and smell the Zoo with us!
Taste: August 9th, 10th, 11th, or 12th
What is your favorite food? Some parrots like nuts, bats like bananas, and lions like meat! Join us to learn how what an animal eats affects their life, and what it is called when an animal eats meat, plants, fruit, or even a little bit of everything!
Red: Kindergarten, $160 per week
Each red camp is Monday through Friday, three hours per day from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm and is designed for students entering Kindergarten in the fall.
Mad about Mammals: June 13th-17th
We are mad about mammals here at the Zoo! From lions to tigers to hedgehogs, oh my! Mammals are some of the cutest and sometimes most powerful animals in the world. Learn what makes a mammal a mammal, and why they are so great!
Storybook Zoo: June 27th-July 1st
Some of our favorite stories center around animals. Each day at camp, this class will read a book together and learn about the sttory’s animal characters!
Artistic Animals: July 18th-22nd
This art based camp week will let young artists go wild! Let your animal instincts run wild through crafts and art projects all week. Campers will use Zoo animals and the natural world around them as inspiration.
Animals A-Z: July 25th-29th
A is for anteater, B is for bat, C is for….Come find out what C through Z stand for here at the Zoo! Combine your love for animals with a lesson on letters in this fun week of camp!
Wild Wardrobe: August 8th-12th
Why does the snow leopard wear such a beautiful spotted coat, and why is a tiger’s fur striped? Why does a hedgehog wear such spikes when a snake has smooth scales? Come find out the answers to these questions and more this week as we learn all about animal coverings.
Yellow: First and Second Grade, $160 per week
Each yellow camp is Monday through Friday, three hours a day from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm and is designed for students entering 1st or 2nd grade in the fall.
Wilderness Scouts: June 20th-24th
Do you have what it takes to become a wilderness scout? Earn your badges by completing a variety of activities and learning all you can about the great outdoors along the way!
Colorful Critters: June 27th-July 1st
From pink flamingos to Blue and Gold Macaws, the Zoo is filled with colorful critters. This week of camp will be art-focused, with campers drawing inspiration from the colors around us.
Catch Me if You Can: July 11th-15th
Some animals are fast and some are sneaky. This week of camp will focus on animals that are good at evading their predators whether with speed or trickery!
Destination: Conservation: July 18th-22nd
If you want to visit the rainforests of South America or the island of Madagascar when you grow up, we should act now to protect these endangered places and the animals who live there. We will learn why some destinations on earth become endangered and what we can do to help them.
Flippers, Fins, and Feathers: July 25th-29th
Why do ducks have webbed feet and fish have fins? Join us in learning all about animals who live in or around the water, or who just go to visit. We will focus on the adaptations that these animals have to help them survive in their wet and watery habitats!
Sense-ational Safari: August 1st-5th
As humans, we have five senses with which to experience the world. This week we will explore the Zoo with our hearing, sight, smell, and touch. We will learn how animals use these senses and more to explore their world.
Herp, herp, hooray!: August 8th-12th
What is a “herp,” you say? It is a reptile or amphibian, hooray! If you would like to become a junior herpetologist (or a reptile scientist) then this is the week of camp for you!
Green Crocodile: First and Second Grade (Full Day), $270 per week
Each green camp is Monday through Friday, seven hours a day from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm and is designed for students entering 1st or 2nd grade in the fall.
Habitat Happenings: June 13th-17th
From deserts to rainforests and everything in between, there are so many different habiatats all over the world. This class will explore different habitats and learn why certain animals thrive in each!
Mythbusters: June 20th-24th
There are many myths in the animal world. People say owls can turn their heads all the way around and that bats are blind. Do you think these are true? Join us to investigate these myths and more!
The Dark Side: June 27th-July 1st
Do you choose the dark side or the light side…of when to be awake that is! Do you like to be awake and active at night or during the day? Come find out which category you fall into and which side the animals prefer.
Wacky and Wild: July 11th-15th
From an anteater with a two-foot tongue to a toad who hibernates through the winter, there are some wacky creatures here at the Zoo! Come learn about the wackiest of the wacky this week at camp!
Small Wonders: July 18th-22nd
How many creatures do you pass by in your own backyard without seeing them? From tiny bugs to bats and frogs, there are small but amazing creatures all around us! This week we will focus on the smallest animals here at the Zoo, including those in our Small Wonders exhibit.
Bulky Beasts: August 1st-5th
From tigers to giraffes to zebras, some of the animals here at the Zoo are huge! Why would you want to be big if you were an animal? We will learn how their body size affects their life, diet, and more. This camp will be big fun!
Colors of the Wild: August 8th-12th
This art-based camp will focus on the colors all around us in the natural world. We often say that leaves are green, but what about the yellow veins and brown tips? A Red-Tailed Hawk is more than red; it is brown, white, tan, and more. There are so many colors around us to inspire us here in the Zoo.
Blue: Third and Fourth Grade, $270 per week ($280 for Turtle-Mania)
Each blue camp is Monday through Friday, seven hours a day from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm and is designed for students entering the 3rd or 4th grade in the fall.
Crafty Critters: June 13th-17th
This camp is for all kids who love to create! We will create animal themed crafts and other art based on what we see around us in the Zoo.
For Pet’s Sake!: June 20th-24th
If you have a pet at home, or are hoping to get one, this is the class you need! We will learn all about being a responsible pet parent as well as which animals do and do not make good pets. During the week you will be able to take home some ideas about enrichment, training, and treats for your own pet!
Animorphs: June 27th-July 1st
Tadpoles turn into frogs, caterpillars turn into butterflies, and those pink flamingos are born white and fluffy. During this week of camp we will learn all about animals, which morph over their lifetime into different, or different-looking, kinds of animals.
Journey of the Jaguar: July 11th-15th
Over the course of this week we will learn all about the rainforests of South America where the jaguar journeys each day. We will also learn about the other unique animals and plants who call the rainforests home. The week will conclude with an enrichment that the campers will make for our Jaguars here at the Zoo.
Turtle-Mania: July 18th-22nd ($285 due to extra staffing needs)
Learn to be a keeper of turtles and tortoises in this animal husbandry class. You will learn all you can about these cool creatures in this in-depth class. From feeding to bathing them, to even training these animals alongside zookeepers, this will be a week to remember!
Animal Instinct: July 25th-29th
Have you ever wondered how lions know to hunt zebras or how geese know to fly south for winter? In this class we will explore the instincts that animals have and learn whether they are really born with them or if they learn from those around them.
Animal Olympics: August 1st-5th
If you are excited for the Olympics in Rio this summer, we hope you will join us for our own Olympics here at the Zoo! This exciting week will be filled with animal competitions as well as human ones, and activities to learn more about awesome athletic animals here at the Zoo.
Radical Raptors: August 8th-12th
Have you ever seen a hawk’s talons or the beak of an owl up close? Fly into camp this week to discover the amazing raptors here at the Zoo, and even take some time to talk about some famous prehistoric raptors!
Purple: Fifth and Sixth Grade, $270 per week
Each purple camp is Monday through Friday, seven hours a day from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm and is designed for students entering 5th or 6th grade in the fall.
It’s Showtime: June 20th-24th ($285 due to extra staffing needs)
Take center stage! Campers work with our Interpretive Center Zookeepers every day and learn how to handle the Zoo’s Animal Ambassadors. During the week, the campers will create and practice a live animal show that will be performed at 3:00 pm on Friday. What will they think up this year?
Wild Innovation: June 27th-July 1st
Chimps make tools from sticks. Crows drop nuts in the street to let cars roll over them and crack their shells open. Burrowing owls spread other animals’ droppings around their burrows to attract delicious bugs. This week we will take a closer look at the innovative ways animals use the world around them to aid in their survival!
Survivor: Zoo Edition: July 11th-15th
To survive in the wild, animals must outwit their predators, and outlast others of their species. Explore the world of animal survival this week while outplaying fellow campers in physical and mental challenges!
From Myth to Reality: July 18th-22nd
Humans often tell stories of amazing creatures like dragons, centaurs, and merpeople. Although these creatures are mythical, their origins are based in reality. Campers this week will learn about the animals that some of these mythical creatures come from and also get creative in inventing their own mythical creature!
Wild about Art: July 25th-29th
This art-based camp will allow campers to explore their creative side. Camp teachers will plan projects as well as teach arts skills for campers to apply. Spend time sketching around the Zoo, studying animals up-close, and bringing the Zoo to life through their art.
ZSI: Zoo Scene Investigators: August 1st-5th
There is a mystery at the Zoo and we need you to solve it! Work with your peers to study evidence, lift fingerprints, and will even interview suspects to find the answer to this mystery!
Silver: 7th through 9th
7th through 9th graders who are ready for the next level of camp experience at the Zoo will love these in-depth classes! We offer single day Zookeeper and Veterinarian career classes (9 am-12 pm) with hands-on experiences, five-day camps (9 am-4 pm), and a three day class (9 am-4 pm) ending in an overnight camp-out at the Zoo!
Zoology 101: June 20th-24th, $270
Take your Zoo Camp learning to the next level in this week-long camp. Learn some basics of animal science, taxonomy, field biology, and anatomy all while touring the Zoo and playing games! Five-day camp, 9 am-4 pm.
Zoo Quest: Enrichment 101: July 13th-16th (Overnight on the 15th), $270
Enrichment is anything which provides environmental stimuli to our animals here at the Zoo to enrich their lives or mirror wild behaviors. Zookeepers work hard to make sure each animal has enrichment every day here at the Zoo. Learn what it takes to prepare these enrichments, why they are important, and even get a chance to design your own! Three day class, 9 am-4 pm ending in an overnight camp-out at the Zoo.
Leaders of the Pack: July 25th-29th, $270
In this brand new camp, find out what it takes to be a part of the Zoo as a staff member or volunteer. Create a master plan, brainstorm viral marketing ideas, and even be trained to work with the Education Department to engage the public! Five-day camp, 9 am-4 pm.
Vet Tag-Along: July 26th & August 5th, $45
Imagine what it takes to care for a toothy tiger or slimy salamander. How do you X-ray a duck’s foot or give a shot to a turtle hiding in his shell? Zoo veterinarians have one of the toughest jobs around. Visit the Zoo's animal hospital and meet the vets that care for many animal species. Single day career classs, 9 am-12 pm with hands-on experiences.
Keeper Tags: $45
Find out what a zookeeper has to do each day to make sure their animals have an enriching habitat to call home. This program includes the following (dependent on the availability of animals and keepers): behind the scenes tours, a kitchen tour, raking and hosing animal areas, making enrichments, and talking to zookeepers. Single day career classs, 9 am-12 pm with hands-on experiences.
- Ungulates: June 15th
- Reptiles & Amphibians: June 29th
- Mammals & Misc. species: July 12th, August 11th