A child peers through a magnifying glass

Where Learning Rules and Curiosity Is Cool

As a part of our larger commitment to learning, we offer a variety of youth programs for kids and teens to grow their passion for animals and nature. Our approach to learning prioritizes creating an environment that’s fun, collaborative, and inclusive. Scholarships are available for most of our programs, as part of our commitment to serving everyone who wants to participate.

For Families & Kids

Zoo educators teaching guests about seals

Zoo Camps

Sign up for one of our seasonal camps, where kids chase their curiosity while discovering the awe-inspiring world of wildlife. Half-day, full-day, and multi-day options are available throughout the year.

A zoo educator reads a book to children

LEAP: Learn, Explore, and Play

Encourage curiosity in nature with active sessions designed for the youngest explorers, ages 2–4, to learn through play.

A zoo educator shows children how to play with sticks

Family Nature Days

Play with natural items like stumps and seeds, brush up on your bird-watching or hiking skills, or venture out on a family scavenger hunt—all at a park near you.

Things to Do

Participate in one of our ongoing daily activities at the zoo, from Seal Training to Free-flight Feeding.

Animal Care staff working with seal

For Schools

Field Trips

Learn everything you need to know about planning an educational, fun, carefree field trip to the zoo.

Zoo Explorers

Sign up your school group for a 55-minute, inquiry-based animal investigation.

Zoo Investigations

Confront the real-life, science-based challenges that Lincoln Park Zoo’s keepers and researchers face every day.

For Teens

Malott Family Zoo Intern Program

Chicago high school students, ages 15–18, work as interpreters on zoo grounds, educating guests about animal science and conservation during an eight-week, paid internship. Applicants must be entering grades 10–12 or their freshman year of college.

Malott Family Research Apprenticeship Program

Chicago high school students, ages 16–18, spend eight weeks working alongside zoo researchers and engaging in authentic scientific research during this paid apprenticeship. Applicants must be entering grades 11–12 or their freshman year of college.

Conservation Ambassadors Board

Share zoo conservation work by planning special events for your peers. This program is a full-school-year commitment, with participants meeting two Saturdays a month from September–May. This is an unpaid service-learning opportunity for students in grades 9–12.

Youth play tug of war on the South Lawn

Camp Teen Volunteer

Chicago high school students, ages 13–18, spend five weeks assisting with the day-to-day running of Conservation Camp for grades preK–8. This is an unpaid, service-learning opportunity for students entering grades 9–12 or their freshman year of college.

Zoo Club

Zoo Club is a free opportunity for teens to engage with Lincoln Park Zoo remotely during the COVID-19 pandemic. Stay connected to Lincoln Park Zoo while building skills in care, community, and conservation!

Events for All Ages

The zoo hosts a variety of fun events every year for kids, teens, and families—from Fall Fest to Campout at the Zoo.

Children bounce in a bounce house