Junior Zoo Academy (8-11 year olds) Whipsnade

With the success of Zoo Academy for older students, ZSL Whipsnade Zoo are excited to launch Junior Zoo Academy.  Aimed at children aged 8-11, this is a great programme for those who are interested in animals and want to learn more in the zoo!

Junior Zoo Academy is a two-day course that includes zoo themed games, challenges, trails and some zookeeper activities!


Who are the courses aimed at?

These courses are designed for children aged 8-11 who love animals and want to learn and experience more in the unique zoo setting. Supported by the Discovery & Learning team, students will have the opportunity to learn about the animals they see as well as make new friends with other like-minded children.

To record their time at the zoo, children will also create a Zoo Scrapbook to take home. They’ll be able to log all the fun and exciting experiences they have with photos and drawings as well as remind themselves of any new facts they have learnt along the way! Children will also gain a certificate at the end of the course to celebrate their attendance on the course.


The content of the course will be a mixture of making toys for the animals at the zoo, getting up close with some of our reptiles and mini-beast as well as zookeeper activities and adventures around the zoo.  A sample outline is below, but please be aware that timings and activities are subject to change.






Meet your new friends

Animal Alphabet…..Get to know all the other students who will be on the Academy and make your own name badge! 



A quick break before we head into the zoo…


Zoo Trail!

Who lives in the zoo? Find out more about some of the zoo animals and where they live…



A short lunch break to refuel for the afternoon



Let’s meet some slithery, scaly reptiles! Are you brave enough to handle them?



Another quick break before…


Discovery Centre

Time to get hands - on with making some animal toys for the inhabitants of the Discovery Centre



Time to start your scrapbooks so you can remember your time at the zoo!



You’ll get dropped off into the care of your adults and you can fill them in on all your adventures!






Time to discover…

…why are zoos important and what do zookeepers do all day?



A quick drink before the tasks begin


Bugs Bugs Bugs

Not everyone likes our creepy-crawlies, will you?



Feeding time for you!


Let’s get our sloth bear’s active!

Our sloth bears need something to keep them occupied, can you help?



Another gulp of juice before…


Tiger Trackers

A scientific adventure where you get to track our tigers…


Sloth bears

A visit to deliver your presents to the sloth bears – watch and wait to see if they enjoy your treat!



Finish off by completing your scrapbooks to take home with you then it’s time to say goodbye!


Course dates:

Junior Zoo Academy courses run for two full days during the school holidays. Full dates below:

Summer Holidays

  • 3rd & 4th August  SOLD OUT
  • 6th & 7th August
  • 10th & 11th August
  • 13th & 14th August

October Half Term

  • 26th & 27th October SOLD OUT
  • 29th & 30th October SOLD OUT



The cost per child is £165. This covers the cost of the course (including zoo entry), as well as a Junior Zoo Academy t-shirt, a Zoo Scrapbook.

To Apply

To apply for a place on the Junior Zoo Academy at ZSL Whipsnade Zoo, please email katherine.doherty@zsl.org or phone 01582 871514.


We will ask for children to be dropped off at the beginning of the day into the care of the Discovery & Learning team. They will be constantly supervised throughout the day, including lunch and break times, and returned to the parent meeting point at 3.00pm. Children will only be released into the care of the authorised adult stated on the consent form. Further information about these arrangements will be provided if your application is successful.

Terms and Conditions

Applications will close when all places have been filled. We aim to acknowledge your application within one week of receipt. Due to limited space on these courses we cannot guarantee that all applicants will be successful. Places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. Payment instructions and further details will be provided to successful applicants by email. The full payment will be required within a fortnight of this email otherwise your place may be lost. Once payment has been taken, refunds cannot be given.


Key information

Following on from the success of Zoo Academy, we are pleased to introduce Junior Zoo Academy! Please follow the relevant instructions at the bottom of the page to apply for a place.

Cost: £165 per child. This must be paid in full to secure your place on one of the courses.

Ages: 8-11 year olds.

Frequently Asked Questions