Teacher Classes at Brookfield Zoo

Ready for a change of pace? Take a teacher workshop at Brookfield Zoo!

Our expert educators will inform, entertain, and engage you as you explore a wide range of topics. The following classes carry ISBE credit (CPDUs) at no additional charge. Many provide optional graduate credit for an additional fee.

Refund Policy
All class fees include a $40 nonrefundable registration fee for 1-hour graduate classes and a $75 nonrefundable registration fee for 3-hour graduate classes. Class fees, minus the nonrefundable registration fee, can be refunded or transferred to another teacher class if we receive notice of this request at least two weeks prior to the date of the original class.

Have you checked out our new Advanced Inquiry Program Master’s degree? It’s fun and exciting, includes travel abroad, and is very affordable. Check it out at www.czs.org/aip

For questions, contact Lanis Petrik at 708-688-8372 or Lanis.Petrik@czs.org., or Julie Wozniak at 708-688-8367 or Julie.Wozniak@czs.org


2014  Summer Teacher Classes at Brookfield Zoo


Be A Scientist!

July 21-25, 2014 (8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. all days.) Grades 3-12, $350, 45 CPDUs, 3 optional graduate credits ($300 through Aurora University.)

Your students will study the lives of amazing scientists and then plan their own expeditions! Map skills, math skills, content knowledge about countries, species and ecosystems all contribute to their plans. Construct this interdisciplinary project for use in your own classroom and take an imaginary journey to places like the savannahs of Kenya, the rain forests of Bolivia or the vanishing forests of Asia.

Registration for this program has closed. Take a look at our other programs and check back next quarter for new program offerings.



Ocean Explorers

July 28- August 1, 2014 (8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. all days.) All Grades, $350, 45 CPDUs, 3 optional graduate credits ($300 through Aurora University.)

Our most popular summer class is back! We focus on ocean animals: bottlenose dolphins, penguins, seals, sea lions, and more. Have a private visit to Stingray Bay and talks from animal care staff and scientists. Carry out a behavioral observation and develop inquiry questions for use with your students. The fee includes curriculum materials.

Registration for this program has closed. Take a look at our other programs and check back next quarter for new program offerings.



Weather and Climate

October 4 and October 11 (8:30 - 4:30 each day) at the Chicago Botanic Garden. All grades; $140. 1 optional graduate credit ($100 through Aurora University), 15 CPDUs.

This lab and observation based class will focus on weather and climate and how plants and animals survive in their ecosystems and in changing weather patterns. Design curriculum activities to connect your students to the cycle of seasons, enabling them to apprise weather and climate change, and draw conclusions about the effects on the natural world. Observe plants and animals, recognize and categorize adaptations that equip them to live and thrive in the natural world.




Animals of the Night

October 17 (4:30 - 10:00) and October 18 (8:30 - 4:30). Grades Pre-K to 5, $140, 15 CPDUs, 1 optional Graduate Credit ($100 through Aurora University)

Is Halloween your favorite day? Then you need to investigate bats, owls, and other creatures that fly, swim, slither, and crawl through the darkness! Have fun as we identify patterns in animal behavior and apply the concepts that explain these amazing animals to reading/writing activities. Participate in tactile and kinesthetic activities that might be great tools to help differentiate for the wide range of inclusion to gifted kids tht you serve.




Animal Travelers

November 21 (4:30 - 10:00) and November 22 (8:30 - 4:30). All grades, $140, 15 CPDUs, 1 optional Graduate Credit ($100 through Aurora University)

All over the planet animals are on the move. Thousands of wildebeest and zebras cross crocodile infested rivers on the Great Migration, flocks of geeese and cranes wing through the skies above Chicago, storks nest in Eurpoe and winter in Africa. There can be safety in numbers: a swarm of bees, a school of fish, or a herd of reindeer move throuhg the air, the sea and across the land. Explain the phenomena of animal movements and the challenes they face with games, animal observations and discussion.




Science Stories

December 6 at the Chicago Botanic Garden and December 7 at Brookfield Zoo. 8:30 - 4:30 both days. All grades, $140, 15 CPDUs, 1 optional Graduate Credit ($100 through Aurora University) PLEASE NOTE: this is a Saturday-Sunday class.

Throughout history humankind has created stories to explain scientific facts and events. Groundhog Day, Jack Frost, the myth of Persephone who brings spring, or the story of the beautiful Snow Queen are all explainations for waether. Folk tales like the African story of the Greedy Zebra tell us how animals got their colors, horns, body coverings, and shapes. Identiry patterns in nature, make observations to explain science and create stories to help students understand the natural world.