A visit with a purpose
There should be a purpose for the visit. The visit should be structured around this purpose.
The purpose of the visit should be clear to everyone and discussed in advance - we recommend an enquiry into something which relates to your work at school. It is a good idea to involve the students in choosing the theme and framing the main questions. Here are some enquiry suggestions and planning support.
The visit should be structured around this purpose. If students have spent time with maps of the zoo and other orientation resources and have prepared an enquiry they will be in a strong position for choosing the animals they wish to visit and the best route to do this.
The more they can control the more they are likely to get out of the visit. There is some guidance on helping your class to plan the day here.
It is not necessary for accompanying adults to be experts - in fact enthusiastic adult learners are great role models. All the same, we know how daunting it can be to take on this role. We can help the adults with a bit of background information and some ideas of things to talk about.
People learn more and retain their learning longer if they are supported to work things out for themselves, rather than being provided with the answer. Adults should be prepared to share interest and learning with the students and to ask plenty of challenging questions, encouraging everyone to talk and share ideas.