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Binder Park Zoo Off-Season Pre-School Program

Who: Any Head-Start or Preschool program with children 3-5 years old.

What: Preschool program where children get to experience an educational program incorporating animals and nature. Each program is 1 ½ hours long and includes an animal presentation, a trip outside and a game, activity or craft that goes with each topic.

Where: Cross Administration Building or the Conservation Discovery Center at Binder Park Zoo.

When: Programs are available from November to early April.  Specific dates and times are based on staff availability and are very flexible based on your group’s need.  Please contact the zoo for more details.     

Why: To connect participants with the natural world around them and give them a chance to get up close and personal with live animals and nature.

Cost: $5/student with 1 teacher free for up to 10 paid children and 1 additional free teacher for classes with over 10 paid children. Additional adults are $5. A $50 non-refundable deposit is due at time of registration. A minimum payment of $50 is needed to run a program.

To Register: Mail/Fax/E-mail registration to:
Binder Park Zoo
Attn: Hannah Smedley
7400 Division Drive
Battle Creek, MI 49014
Phone: (269)979-1354 ext. 174
Fax: (269)979-8834

Payment Policy: A $50 deposit must be made at the time of registration. Final payment is due the day of program.  All deposits are non-refundable. If program is cancelled with less than 1 weeks’ notice then the minimum $50 fee will be charged.
*If School is closed due to weather we will work with you to try to find another available date to reschedule. 

Available Topics

Sense of Wonder: Explore your senses by getting up close and personal to some animals with amazing senses. Join us for a senses hike where we will use as many of our senses as possible to explore the outdoors. (ELE-S 1; HSCOF-S 4.2.1, HSCOF-PDH 8.3.2)

Hooray for Homes: What three things do animals need to survive? How do animals live in forests, deserts, and other habitats? Take an exciting trip with us while we explore several habitats and the animals that call them home. ELE-S 1; 2.5; HSCOF-S 4.2.1; HSCOF-PDH 8.3.2)

Masters of Movement: They hop, they fly, and they climb. Some animals can move in several ways while others move with just one. Young naturalists will explore how humans and animals move during this fast-paced program. (ELE-S 1; ELE-SEP 5.1; HSCOF-S 4.2.1; HSCOF-PHD 8.1.1; 8.3.2)

Fur, Feathers or Scales: How are birds different than reptiles? How are reptiles different than mammals? Young Scientists will begin understanding how animals are split into classes as we explore the basic differences between mammals, birds and reptiles. (ELE-S 1; HSCOF-S 4.1.2; 4.2.1; HSCOF-PDH 8.3.2)

Hiding in Plain Sight: Animals have a special adaptation called camouflage to help them blend in to their surroundings. Join us for our very own animal hide and seek and see if we can find animals hiding in plain sight. (ELE-S 1; HSCOF-S 4.2.1; HSCOF-PDH 8.3.2)

Dinosaurs and Fossils: Dinosaurs may be extinct but they have left behind fossils for Paleontologists to find. Bring your little Paleontologists and help us uncover some amazing dinosaur facts. (ELE-S 1; ELE-S 2; ELE-SEP 6.1; ELE-SS 1.1; HSCOF-S 4.1.1, 4.1.2, 4.1.3, 4.2.1, 4.2.4; HSCOF-PDH 8.2.3, 8.3.2)

Don’t see a topic that fits your needs? Let us know and we would be happy to work with you to create a program.

*All programs do have an outdoor portion and all participants need to be prepared to walk outside even if it’s raining or snowing!

ELE-Early Learning Standards (referenced S-Science and SEP-Social, Emotional and Physical Health and Development, SS-Social Studies)
HSCOF-Head Start Child Outcomes Framework (referenced S-Science and PDH-Physical Development and Health)


Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural AffairsBattle Creek Community Foundation