Teacher Resources

​​​​​​Education Kits 

Our education kits are designed to engage and educate students with hands-on activities focusing on animals here at the Zoo and around the world. Especially popular with parents who home school their children, these science kits include a teacher's manual, books, artifacts, activities, and more. [more...]

You may pick up the kits at the Zoo’s Hix Institute and borrow them for a two-week period. 

Education Kit Topics

  • Animal Tales Kit: A variety of stories and activities designed to stimulate young students' curiosity about animals.

  • Elephant Kit: Guide students as they learn all about one of the world's largest animals.

  • Penguin Kit: Explore the world of penguins with your students as they learn about penguin adaptations, habitats and conservation. 

  • Sensory Kit: Students will use their senses to investigate the animal world.

  • Snake Kit: Take students on journey to discover the fascinating world of snakes.

  • Conservation Kit: Bring conservation to your classroom by exploring the relationship between endangered species and the wildlife trade.

The cost is just $10 per kit.

If you would you like to reserve an education kit please email us at edustaff@indyzoo.com​, or call (317) 630-2000 between 9am-3pm Mon-Fri for more information. [close]

Teacher Professional Development Opportunities

Are you looking for ways to grow both personally and professionally?  The Zoo offers unique opportunities for teachers to learn too!  Discover ways to engage your students in conservation, inquiry and STEM, and bring the Zoo back to your classroom. 

​​Conservation Educator Academy​

The inaugural gathering of the Indianapolis Zoo’s Conservation Educator Academy for educators K-12 is June 24-26, 2014, 8:30am-4:30pm, at the Zoo’s Simon Skjodt International Orangutan Center. There is no cost to attend, but the program is valued at $1,250. For an additional cost, credit is available through Ball State University. [more...]

The Indianapolis Zoo and Ball State are proud to offer the first Conservation Educator Academy, an institute to help teachers develop and implement inquiry and project-based lesson plans that employ resources and ideas associated with the International Orangutan Center and the Indianapolis Zoo in the areas of science and conservation.  

  • Tour the International Orangutan Center and see the orangutans.

  • Meet and talk with Zoo staff about the work they are doing with the orangutans.

  • Learn the principles of teaching inquiry based learning from Ball State University’s Science Education faculty.

  • Use evidence of student learning to improve teaching practice, guided by BSU faculty.

Attendees will receive free parking and Zoo admission during the workshop, and a Zoo pass for the remainder of the summer to support lesson planning.

All spaces for the June 2014  Conservation Educator Academy​ are currently full, but a waitlist is available. To be added to the wait list, please email us edustaff@indyzoo.com

Tentative Agenda

Day 1 – June 24, 2014

  • Tour the International Orangutan Center with Zoo staff. Staff will explain the research conducted at the Zoo, and the design of the exhibit.

  • Discussion of inquiry teaching principles, led by Ball State University faculty.

  • Begin development of lesson plan topics.

Day 2 – June 25, 2014

  • Learn from Zoo staff about observation skills used at the Zoo and in the field.

  • Opportunity to practice using your observation skills.

  • Workshop on inquiry lesson planning with Ball State University staff.

  • Explore lesson planning resources.

Day 3 – June 26, 2014

  • Time for lesson plan development.

  • Zoo staff presentation of learning games and activities. 

  • Orientation to ongoing support from Ball State University.

  • Participants receive Zoo passes and materials for summer planning.​

Beyond the workshop, approximately 21 additional hours are required to complete lesson planning:

  • Blackboard access to BSU faculty;

  • Unit planning — to be completed by Aug. 1;

  • Develop online Learning Community. [close]

​​​Educator Open House ​

Save the Date! The Indianapolis Zoo will be hosting an Educator Open House in conjunction with the Simon Skjodt International Orangutan Center on Sept. 4, 2014. Information on how to register coming soon!

Please e-mail us at edstaff@indyzoo.com or call (317) 630-2000 between 9am-3pm Mon-Fri with questions.​​