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Lesson Title: A Scavenger Hunt at the Zoo

K-12 Educators Apr 23, 2024

Wondering what to do on a zoo field trip?

Visiting your local zoo can be more than just an end-of-the-year field trip! Designed for curious minds, this unique lesson plan combines the thrill of a scavenger hunt with the educational richness of a zoo visit. In teams, students navigate the zoo, completing interactive challenges, and uncovering the secrets of nature's most fascinating creatures. By leveraging technology to facilitate learning and interaction, students learn to collaborate and think critically. This adventure promises to not only deepen their understanding of the animal kingdom but engage students and keep them accountable for their learning! Get ready to transform a day at the zoo into an unforgettable learning experience that combines technology, teamwork, and the great outdoors.

Grade: 5 - 9

Subject: Science, Biology

Objective:

  • Students will explore various animal exhibits at the zoo to learn about animal habitats, behaviors, and conservation efforts. 
  • By participating in a scavenger hunt using Goosechase, students will engage in an interactive and fun way to apply their learning and teamwork skills.

Materials:

  • Zoo maps
  • Pens and clipboards (optional, for note-taking)
  • Lesson plan handouts (including details on animals to focus on)
  • A mobile device with the Goosechase app downloaded

In-class Preparation:

  • Introduction to zoo 
    • Introduce the students to the types of animals they will encounter, their habitats, and interesting facts. Use videos, presentations, and discussions.
    • Discuss the importance of zoos in conservation efforts, endangered species, and how individuals can contribute to wildlife conservation.
    • Ask students which animals they are most looking forward to learning about
  • Overview of the Activity:
    • Discuss the learning objectives for the visit. 
    • Introduce the Goosechase Experience as a fun and interactive way to learn and explore.
  • Animal Research 
    • Assign each student or group an animal to research before the visit. 
    • Ask them to brainstorm questions they have and will attempt to answer during their visit.
  • Create an Experience on the Goosechase app with a series of science-related Missions. Ideas include:
    • Taking a photo with a species that has a unique adaptation and explaining what it is.
    • Recording a video of a team member mimicking an animal behavior observed.
    • Answering quiz questions about conservation status of certain animals.
    • Finding a zookeeper to answer a question about the daily life of an animal.
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Stumped for scavenger hunt ideas? Our free, AI-powered Scavenger Hunt Mission Generator is the easiest way to get started.
  • App Set-Up 
    • Dedicate time to ensuring all students have the Goosechase app downloaded and joined to the Experience to avoid any tech issues the morning of your Museum visit. 
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Share this link with students to easily download the app!

Zoo Visit and Scavenger Hunt:

  • Upon Arrival at the Zoo
    • Gather students for a brief orientation. 
    • Review the day's schedule, map out the various animal enclosures to visit
    • Review safety guidelines and discuss expected behavior.
    • Encourage students to ask questions to the staff and take advantage of any educational resources offered.
  • Scavenger Hunt Exploration
    • Students explore the zoo in their teams, completing various tasks and challenges related to the animals. 
    • Encourage students to use their observation skills to find specific species, answer questions, and complete tasks on the Goosechase mission list.
    • Emphasize the significance of teamwork and cooperation during the scavenger hunt.
    • Documentation of student observations are recorded within the Goosechase app and automatically saved to their camera roll.

Debrief & Reflection:

  • Gather students to discuss their experiences. Highlight their observations, interesting facts learned, favorite moments, and reflections on conservation.
  • Have students complete a reflection worksheet that includes what they learned, their favorite part of the visit, and any questions they still have.

Optional activities upon return to the classroom:

1) Presentation and Discussion

    • Back in the classroom, students prepare short presentations on their scavenger hunt findings, focusing on their assigned animals, behaviors observed, and any conservation insights.
    • Encourage discussion on conservation efforts and how students can contribute to animal welfare and preservation.

2) Assessment:

    • Assess students on their participation and engagement during the visit, completion of any pre or post visit worksheets and the quality and creativity of the research project/presentation

Want a copy of this lesson plan to use with your class? Click to download!


What is Goosechase EDU?

Goosechase is an online platform that helps educators create and run interactive learning experiences in their classrooms and beyond. Sign up and try creating an Experience, or contact us to learn more about our school and district-wide solutions!

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Rebecca Everson

Goosechase EDU Ambassador Program Manager & K-6 Teacher