24 Nov 2022

For several years, Chester Zoo have been working with schools across the region to embed conservation and sustainability at the heart of the school curriculum. Through activities like the IgniteZoo project and our schools outreach projects we’ve been engaging with young people to inspire the conservationists of the future.

In the Autumn term, nearly 100 young people from 11 schools took over the zoo with a programme of talks, visitor engagement activities and expressive arts performances, exploring solutions to the global extinction crisis.

“We hope that people come out of this with a deeper understanding that animals are close to extinction and realise that they really need the help.”

St Bernard’s Primary School pupils.

Young conservationists from the schools engaged with zoo visitors, speaking passionately about topics such as sustainable palm oil, the illegal wildlife trade, fast fashion and the impact of plastics and waste in the world’s oceans.

Sean Dick, Learning Operations Manager, said: 

“To see so many young people ‘takeover’ Chester Zoo is truly amazing. These young conservationists are our future leaders, and they are already taking action to protect our planet. 

We believe that wildlife conservation should become a core component of the education system nationwide, taught across the curriculum in every year group for every child and young person. 

This is critical to the future of the planet they will inhabit; it is as important as any other aspect of their education. These are the issues our young people care about; you can see the passion and authenticity that they speak with, and we have to empower them with the skills to solve the challenges we are facing as a society.”

By developing our outreach project work and teacher CPD in partnership with academic experts and teachers, we have created a model that integrates conservation in a cross-curricular approach – from art, science and geography, through to English, maths and IT.  In doing this, the teachers and our education team encourage young people to look at real world issues from many different perspectives and apply their learning in a tangible way.

It’s through events like our School’s Takeover Day that young people get to take everything they’ve learned in school and showcase this by becoming a voice for change in conservation.  By giving them a platform, we hope that they feel more empowered to speak confidently about these important issues in the future.

“I think it’s good for the zoo to get involved with teaching young people, because we’re the next generation and if we don’t do something about it, then nobody else will”

-St Mary’s Catholic College pupils 

16 May 2022

We want to empower young people to make good choices and advocate for the planet.

10 Mar 2022

We’re facing ever increasing global temperatures, extreme weather and an untold number of species are under threat of extinction due to a changing climate. If not affected directly, young people are still exposed to the huge topic of climate change daily, and they need the knowledge and aspirations to be able to tackle it.

31 Jan 2022

Over 30,000 children will be able to visit us for FREE as part of an organised educational visit between November 2022 – February 2023. 

9 Nov 2021

To mark the halfway point of COP26, we’re taking a look at what’s happened at the conference so far and what promising actions may be coming up…

17 Aug 2021

Play is serious business at Chester Zoo. We’ve been working hard to make the zoo as playful as possible. Why? Because play helps ensure a FANTASTIC zoo visit for our guests and it can even help us ACHIEVE our conservation mission.


12 Feb 2021

The zoo may be closed but that hasn’t stopped our work with schools.  Over the lockdown period we have engaged with thousands of schools and pupils via our virtual workshops , our live virtual zoo days and with our free online resources.  It’s been brilliant but we wanted to know if there was more that we could do.

We are very lucky here at Chester Zoo to work in partnership with a panel of education experts (Curriculum Advisory Panel) who help to direct our work making it as usable and relevant as possible for schools. With their advice we are really excited to announce our latest offering… 

4 Dec 2020

We have lots of conservation topics that we are passionate about here at the zoo. Through our work with schools and our Curriculum Advisory Panel we know how important these topics are to teachers and pupils alike once they start to explore them in more detail. We’ve put together this collection of videos to help introduce some conservation conversations to your classrooms, PSHE sessions, form time or even to use in assemblies.

21 Jul 2020

We absolutely love working with schools throughout the year. We love welcoming them to the zoo, as well as going out to schools across the North West and North Wales to teach and inspire young people about conservation and the actions they can take to act for wildlife. So it’s been devastating that school visits haven’t been possible in recent months and we’ve really missed working directly with you.

However during lockdown, we’ve been pleased to bring you many new learning resources for you to enjoy at home and at school, as well as our Virtual Zoo Days.  It’s been wonderful that so many of you have continued to use the zoo as a source of inspiration for learning and we’ve been overwhelmed by the support you’ve shown us through our Save Our Zoo campaign.

It’s been a delight to see so many of the schools that we’ve worked with and even some new schools, joining our Chester Zoo mission of preventing extinction, to learn about wildlife and ways they can help conservation through zoo focused projects. We’ve seen so many example of pupils creating posters to help ‘Save Our Zoo’, fact files about species they’ve learned about from our Virtual Zoo Days, creating their own amazing zoos out of materials at home or school and even habitats in shoe boxes.

We caught up with a few of the schools who have been sharing their work on social media to learn more about what they’ve been up to.

16 Jul 2020

From September 2020, you can take an incredible trip to Chester Zoo from anywhere in the world with our first ever VIRTUAL ZOO VISITS!

We have a range of exciting and engaging sessions to inspire your learners and explore our incredible collection of animals and plants without needing to leave school.

These live and interactive Virtual Zoo Visits will be delivered by our team of experts with a focus on exploring a range of species and subjects. Your Virtual Zoo Visit will engage students, achieve learning outcomes and be easy to access using the latest digital platforms.

Each session is specifically designed for each key stage to inspire your learners and enrich their experience using an incredible collection of artefacts, our amazing animal collection and our first-hand conservation knowledge and experience.

Once you book, you will also get access to exclusive content and unique resources to support learning before and after your live Virtual Zoo Visit. This whole package will provide you with all the tools you’ll need to expand on the learning provided in the session, taking the experience even further.