Homeschool Happenings

Do you have a school-aged (4-16) student who is hooked on nature and animals? Well then, the Caldwell Zoo Homeschool Program is for you! Your student will dive into a world of adventure and learn all about the animals that share the world around us. Each class will include age-appropriate exploration of the topic, time on zoo grounds, and an opportunity to make lasting friendships.

Current Meeting Days/Times:

The remaining sessions for the 2018-2019 program are from 1:30-3:30 pm on the following days:

Tuesday I: Jan. 15, Feb. 5
4-5 year olds Session A
6-8 year olds Session D

Wednesday I: Jan. 16, Feb. 6
4-5 year olds Session B
6-8 year olds Session E

Thursday I: Jan. 17, Feb. 7
4-5 year olds Session C
6-8 year olds Session F

Tuesday II: Jan. 22, Feb. 12
6-8 year olds Session G
9-11 year olds Session H

Wednesday II: Jan. 23, Feb. 13
9-11 year olds Session I
12-16 year olds Session J

 

Fall 2019-Spring 2020 Season:

Homeschool classes meet once a month for a total of 6 sessions. Beginning fall 2019, classes will meet for three hours from 12:30 pm - 3:30 pm on Mondays, Tuesdays, or Wednesdays. With the extended time at the zoo, we will provide a light snack  for all students. Watch for registration for the next program to open in the fall.

Prices:

ZooMembers: $100 for 6 sessions
Non-members: $115 for 6 sessions

Ages:

Macaw: 4-5 year olds
Pelican: 6-8 year olds
Swan: 9-11 year olds
Eagle: 12-16 year olds

Frequently Asked Questions

Homeschool classes start at 12:30 pm and end at 3:30 pm. The sessions are on Mondays, Tuesdays, or Wednesdays.

We will have up to 16 students and two teachers per class.

For drop-off, the bus lot will open at 12:20 pm and close at 12:40 pm. This is so students can get the most out of their class time. For pick-up, the bus lot will open at 3:15 pm. If you will be late to drop-off/pick-up, please let us know as soon as you can.

Yes. At drop off, parents will sign their student in, along with leaving a number for us to call in case of emergency. We ask that this number is fully accessible the whole time your student is with us. Each student will need to also be signed out before leaving the zoo. When you are picking up your student, you will be asked for your photo ID to ensure that each student is going home with an approved adult.

An approved adult is one of the adults that will be allowed to sign a student out. Before sessions begin, you will be given a choice to list up to three different adults to sign out your student. These adults will need to bring a photo ID with them in order to pick up the student. If someone that is not on your list comes to pick up your student, we will not let them leave until you give us permission to let them go.

Just a snack, a reusable water bottle, and a smile! Your student is welcome to bring a camera if they would like, but we ask that your students leave everything else at home, including toys, stuffed animals, books, etc. If your student has a cell phone that you would like them to bring with them, they are welcome to bring it and have it off unless an emergency arises. If we notice the cell phone becoming a distraction, we will hold it until the end of class.

If you know your student will not be in class on the day of his/her session, or if you are running late, please let us know as soon as possible. You may email us at education@caldwellzoo.org, or call us at 903-593-0121 ext. 228.

Parents and siblings are welcome to enjoy the zoo while we are in class, but each parent and sibling must exit the bus lot and go through the main entrance in order to walk around the zoo. If you are a member, you will have to be scanned in. If you are not a member, you will be required to pay admission if you wish to stay in the zoo. If you know that you are planning to walk the zoo during your child's class, you are welcome to walk them from the main entrance to the bus parking lot to drop them off, so that you can avoid moving your car.
No, because this is a drop-off program, we do not have space to accommodate parents remaining with the group. Having family around can be distracting for the students, and we want all participants to get the most out of every class.

Please feel free to contact our Education Department at education@caldwellzoo.org or by calling us at 903-593-0121 ext. 228.

We regularly host students with allergies and do our best to accommodate their needs. Please make sure to notify your instructor at check-in of specific allergies. We cannot guarantee that our classrooms are nut free. If your student has severe food allergies, you are welcome to send them with a snack each day.

We do not administer medication of any kind. Our teachers may remind students to take their medication, but cannot hold it for them.

We understand that a student may have a birthday or special occasion arise during the session. While homeschool instructors work to provide fun daily snacks during the homeschool programming, we will allow you to bring a group snack for a special event if we know in advance, as some students may have allergies. These snacks have to be store bought and sealed. If the staff does not know about these snacks in advance, they have the right to turn away any group snack.

Each session is led by trained instructors. We will not exceed a ratio of ten students to one adult. Our instructors have eyes on every child at all times, and there will always be two adults present with a group of children.

Sessions will occur rain or shine! Please send your child in the appropriate clothing. Due to child safety, if your child is not appropriately dressed for the weather, the camp staff has the right to send them home. In case of lightning, all activities will move indoors.

  • Be polite and kind to animals and people
  • Two feet on the sidewalk at all times
  • Stay with your group at all times
  • Keep hands and feet to yourself
  • Do not approach or touch an animal unless you have been instructed to do so
  • Raise your hand and do not talk if others are talking
  • Leave your space cleaner than when you found it

Caldwell Zoo does not provide refunds for cancelled registrations. You are welcome to find another child to take your student's spot for the entire season as long as it is before the start of the first session date. To transfer registration to another child, you must notify zoo staff at least one month prior to the start of the session. Registration for the new student must be received two weeks before the first class, or else Caldwell Zoo holds the right to refuse participation.

We welcome children with special needs! We ask that the guardian inform us of the needs of the child so we are able to accommodate. If your child requires the assistance of an aide, the aide is more than welcome to join the child free of charge, but this must be arranged at the time of registration.

This program does not replace a science curriculum. This is a supplementary science based learning experience that includes hands on exploration and experiment based learning. Your child must be able to cooperatively play, sit, and listen for 10 minutes. Students must be toilet trained and must be able to take restroom breaks independently. If you have questions about this policy, please contact us! Reach us by phone: 903-593-0121 ext. 228; reach us by email: education@caldwellzoo.org.

Please call 903-593-0121, and they will coordinate with your child's teacher.

If your child will be absent, please let us know at least an hour in advance. There are no refunds or make-up days for time missed.

Caldwell Zoo staff strives to maintain a safe and positive learning environment at all zoo programs. Staff members are trained in different behavior management techniques that include redirection, quiet time, verbal warnings, discussions or shortening activity time. If a student jeopardizes the safety or enjoyment of the program, staff have the right to send that child home at any time.

The entire education staff is trained in CPR and First Aid, should your child need it. If your child is feeling sick during this program, we will notify their emergency contact. In the case of fever, vomiting, lice, pink eye, or other transmittable illnesses, your child will be sent home immediately.

Caldwell Zoo is not responsible for loss or damage of any personal items brought to the zoo. Children should avoid bringing jewelry or other irreplaceable items. Found articles will be kept for lost and found during your time at the zoo. You may inquire about lost items by talking to a staff member during check-in/out.

Reservations are only valid for the session booked. Homeschool Happenings is non-refundable; however the reservation can be rescheduled or transferred when possible (as long as the request is make two weeks in advance of the first class). All programs are subject to availability. Be sure to read our Homeschool Happenings information and policies thoroughly. Caldwell Zoo has the right to cancel these programs at any time without prior notice for full refund. If your student jeopardizes the welfare of an animal or the safety of anyone in the group they will be removed from the program with no refund. All participants must be the age of their program at the start of the first class. Any campers that are registered for the wrong age group risk their reservation to be cancelled for no refund. Age will be verified on the first day of class. Please call 903-593-0121 for more details on limitations. Prices are subject to change without notice.
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