Youth and Family Programs
Youth and Family Programs

From preschool to adults, we have something for everyone!

Jungle Juniors Preschool Program

Start your child on a lifelong path of discovery beginning with our Jungle Juniors Preschool Programs! During these engaging sessions, youngsters ages 3-5 will start learning about the wild world around them. Each program includes hands-on activities, animal artifacts, a Zoo walk, and a story or craft.

  • Ages 3 and 4

    These programs are designed for children to work one-on-one together with a parent or caregiver. With every paid child, one adult is admitted free and is required to stay for the program. To ensure that each preschooler has the best experience possible, parents must make alternate childcare arrangements for any siblings who are not signed up for the class.

    3-4 Single Sessions

    Cost: $15 members/$20 non-members. 9:30-11:00am

    Preschool Programs will go on sale for Zoo Members at 9am Jan. 14 and for the general public at 9am on Jan. 28

    • Sharks – March 8 – SOLD OUT
    • Fishy Friends – March 15 – SOLD OUT
    • Ocean Critters – March 22 – SOLD OUT
    • Butterflies – April 8 or 9 – SOLD OUT
    • Rainforest –  July 20
  • Ages 4 and 5

    This is designed as a drop-off program to allow preschoolers an opportunity to practice independence in preparation for school.

    4-5 Single Sessions

    Cost: $20 members/$25 non-members. 9:30-11:30am

    Preschool Programs will go on sale for Zoo Members at 9am Jan. 14 and for the general public at 9am on Jan. 28

    • Meerkat and Friends – Jan. 23
    • Walrus – March 7
    • Dolphin – March 14 – SOLD OUT
    • Sea Lion – March 21

    4-5 Preschool Series

    Cost: $50 members and $65 non-members. 9:30-11:30am

    These preschool series include three consecutive weekly classes to delve a little deeper into one subject.

    • Opposites – Feb. 13, 20 and 27
Sign up For a Jungle Juniors Program
Saturday Science Programs

Cost: $30 Members/$35 non-members

Learning more about the natural world around us is all about science! With the Zoo’s Saturday Science program, kids can investigate zoological situations by utilizing the scientific method. During this program participants will observe, question and explore areas of the Zoo … and have fun while they’re at it!

These programs are for children only and are drop-off programs.

Saturday Science Programs will be available for registration on Jan. 28. View the full schedule of upcoming program topics below.

Saturday Science Sessions
  • Saturday Science 6-8 year olds

    Who Lives in Your Backyard? — Feb. 2
    From owls to turtles, rabbits to butterflies – Indiana has a variety of amazing animals that can be found in your own backyard. Using binoculars along with some detective skills, come discover the wildlife living in and around the Zoo.

    Carnivores — March 16

  • Saturday Science 9-12 year olds

    Desert Keeper — Jan. 19
    Do you like it hot?  Do you like reptiles, birds and mammals?  Our Deserts Keepers say yes to both questions.  Discover what it takes to be a Deserts Keeper at the Indianapolis Zoo.  We’ll investigate their daily schedule and discuss what background you need to care for these animals.

    Endangered Species — March 2
    Disappearing before our eyes – many of the world’s most beautiful and beneficial animals are some of the world’s most endangered. Learn about some of these animals and how you can help save them.

    Junior Paint Out — April 6
    Youth can get inspired and explore their creative side with the new Junior Paint Out. Participants will create art pieces inspired by the wild world around them.

Saturday Science Programs will be available for registration on Jan. 28
Sign up For a Saturday Science Program
Family Nature & Science – Frogs

Feb. 23 • 9:30-11:30

Cost: $12 for Zoo members and $15 non-members

Explore frogs and amphibians, their habitats and their conservation in this two hour program that begins in the classroom and ends in the field. Learn about Indiana amphibian species, where to find them, and become a citizen scientist to help them. Dawn VanDeman from Eagle Creek Park will join Zoo staff in leading families on this learning adventure.

Sign Up Today!

Career Tours

Middle School Students-  March 30 • 9-11:30am
High School Students-  March 30 • 9-11:30am
Cost: $45 for Zoo members and $50 for non-members

Interested in a zoo career? Discover the wide variety of zoo careers and learn what it takes to work at a zoo. Go behind the scenes and talk with Zoo staff. Sessions are available for both Middle School and High School students.

Registration opens Jan. 28

Sign Up Now!
Family Overnight Adventures

Spring Family Overnight – March 15

Looking for something new to do with the family? Come and experience an overnight at the Zoo! With our Family Overnight program, you will get to spend the night at the Zoo and participate in a variety of different activities specifically designed for families, including a craft, games, animal stories, a special after-hours Zoo tour and catered breakfast.

Requirements for Participation

Multiple families may sign up for an Indianapolis Zoo Family Overnight. We require a minimum of 20 and a maximum of 45 total participants. If fewer than 20 register, we may have to to cancel the overnight. We will notify families at least 30 days prior to the evening if we have to cancel.

Participants must be at least 6 years old to participate in any Indianapolis Zoo overnight program.

Cost: $40 per person for members, $50 for non-members.

Additional Overnight Information and FAQs

  • Your program fees include Zoo and White River Gardens admission, parking fees, all activities, spending the night at the Zoo and a catered breakfast buffet.
  • Your family will be joined by others. The maximum number of participants for a Family Overnight is 45.
  • Overnight guests sleep on the floor in one of our indoor event spaces. Air mattresses are welcome. Bathroom facilities are available but no showers.
  • Please note that the Zoo reserves the right to change any programming as necessary, including anything listed above.
Sign Up now
Generation Conservation

Cost: $150

Generation Conservation is a select team of teenagers who are interested in conserving wild things and wild places. Once a month from February through September, Generation Conservation works collaboratively with several of the Zoo’s conservation partners, such as Butler University’s Center for Urban Ecology, Purdue University, the Nature Conservancy and Keep Indianapolis Beautiful. Each experience is unique and provides hands-on opportunities of learning. Together we can learn, grow and work hard to help keep our planet healthy.

Want to become a part of the team? Teens 16-18 years old are eligible to apply to join Generation Conservation. Applications for the 2019 season are now closed. Please contact for more information.