Time to put on those animal dresses – it’s time to head to the Zoos!
After some research – here is what we came up with for our “zoo from home day” using FREE links and activities.
San Diego Zoo
Did you know that the SD Zoo has a YouTube channel called San Diego Zoo Kids? I didn’t until researching this. All the videos are 5 minutes or less and on one topic or animal. On the bottom of the channel, there are curated playlists. We covered the videos with quick facts on varying animals on the Did You Know? playlist. If you are looking for more short clip like videos with the animals, there is also the San Diego Zoo channel on YouTube.
There are so many Live Cams to watch at the zoo. We checked out the Polar Bear cam, the Tiger cam, the Koala cam, Giraffe Cam and the Elephant cam. While watching the videos, I scrolled through on a separate device to read about the animals while we watched the video feed, taking turns with A.
Craft: The craft and activity section of the San Diego Zoo Kids website abounds with ideas! Because of the limits of our art supplies, we chose to make leafy animals. M and the girls went out in between spurts of rain to get leaves. We found pinecones when gathering up our art supplies which make for great bodies of nature-fied animals!
Snack: When searching around the San Diego Zoo Kids page, I found this “All Taste, No Waste” recipe. After watching the Yellowstone video on our National Parks virtual day, the girls recognized that nothing is wasted on animals. We discussed not wasting food, especially now since we have limitations on how often we can grocery shop. The “pudding” was a great way to stretch ends of bread and small amounts of fruit. Then made the pudding. We used raisins and found a handful of chocolate chips.
12:00 PST – Facebook Live with the Cincinnati Zoo: The Bonobos went on an Easter egg hunt! Again, with the liveLive videos can be found here after they go Live and here with the newest ones on the top of the page.
Inspired by the Penguin at-home activity on the Home Safari resource page, we made an obstacle course relay for the “penguins” (us) to move through while keeping their “egg” on their feet. It’s still raining here, so the relay had to be inside. We worked as a team so it wasn’t a competition. The goal was to keep the “egg” safe and follow through the obstacle course while keeping the “egg” safe. This was a perfect segue into a non-zoo Easter egg activity.
At first I was nervous to even use our precious resources of eggs for making dyed eggs, but the reality is we eat hard boiled eggs as snacks or part of lunch often. We did stick to a smaller number of 6 this time, so just the kids would make and dye them.
Reading about the Zoo
We gathered our favorite animal books: Giraffes Can’t Dance, Hedgehugs (this one is seriously cute and worth the read for kids and adult alike!), classic board book Dear Zoo (and it’s under $5 now!), and Baby Lit: The Jungle Book, An Animals Primer. With the trickling sounds of the rain, we cuddled under blankets and read together. These books are geared toward the early elementary age group.
Creating a Zoo
After our zoo-tastic day, we made our own Zoo with our LEGO animals. We picked up this LEGO set in Japan, but this set on Amazon is close to it and even has a plane! After learning and discussing the animals during the day, they embraced making their own zoo.
Well – that’s a full spring break! We went to Disney, explored Aquariums, adventured the National Parks and did a LEGO challenge day! It was different and sometimes difficult, but it was wonderful and fun planning it together. We hope you are able to enjoy these days and plans too, and share them with your friends and family. This time of isolation is a balancing game, and we are all in this together.
Now we will start on some quarantine/isolation recipes for an Easter dinner. I am thinking graham cracker crust for the cherry pie since flour is a precious commodity, and we have a can of cherry pie filling ready to be used.