Teacher's Corner - Classes

Animal Classification - 3rd Grade and Up 

The animal kingdom is broken down into five different classes; mammals, reptiles, amphibians, birds, and fish. This class will discuss the differences between each classification. Live animals will be used to represent some animal classes.

Note:  40 - 60 students

Reptiles And Amphibians - 2nd Grade and Up 

This class will teach students to differentiate between reptiles and amphibians. Students will learn life cycle differences, skin differences, behavior differences and habitat differences. We will provide an opportunity for students to see the animals up close and the option to touch the live animals.

Note:  40 - 60 students

Life Cycles - 3rd Grade and Up 

This class will give examples of animals that go through metamorphosis and will demonstrate how that compares to us and most other mammals. This class will also explain metamorphosis in the complete form and incomplete form, with examples of species from each type.

Note:  40 - 60 students

Owls/Birds of Prey - 2nd Grade and Up

Also known as Raptors!  Five distinguishing characteristics make these birds more impressive than other birds. Students will learn about the 5 characteristics, see live birds of prey and experience real examples of the characteristics of raptors.

Note:  40 - 60 students

Bison - 2nd Grade and Up 

Bring your students out to learn more about this magnificent creature.  This animal, as much as any other, helped shape our western heritage.  The bison era can teach us some valuable social lessons.

Note:  60 - 75 students

Feed the Bear - All Grades

Learn how much food a bear needs to eat and how a bear's diet will change throughout the year. Watch as staff feeds the bear showing the large variety of food bears will find in the wild. Learn more facts and natural history about bears in Minnesota.

Note:  Available mid-April through October, 30 - 50 students

Animal Introductions (formerly known as Touch and Learn) - All Grades

This is an excellent starter program for younger students.  Topics discussed include the daily happenings here at the zoo and park, as well as some basic environmental principles.  We also provide the opportunity for some "hands on" learning with our live critters and wildlife artifacts.

Note:  30 - 50 students

Elk/Deer - 2nd Grade and Up 

Have you ever heard an elk bugle, or witnessed a buck "coming out of velvet?"   Students will learn the natural history behind these awesome animals and will be given an opportunity to see the beauty of these creatures up close while we feed them.

Note:  60 - 75 students

Wolves - 2nd Grade and Up 

See and learn about the largest canine species in Minnesota. Wolves have a very interesting natural history and complex social structure within their pack.  Bring your students out to learn more about these fascinating creatures.

Note:  40 - 60 students

Animal tracks and signs - Kindergarten - 2nd Grade

Join us and learn how to look for signs and clues of animal life around us. This fun class will promote life-long interest and curiosity about our natural world.

Note:  30 -50 students

Feed the Otters - 2nd Grade and Up 

River otters are a curious animal with many adaptations for hunting on land and fishing in the water. Watch a naturalist feed the river otters at Zollman Zoo and learn fun facts about river otters.

Note:  30 - 50 students

Animal Enrichment - All Grades 

Come and learn some of the techniques that zoo keepers use to keep the animals at Zollman Zoo busy and entertained.

Note:  30 - 50 students

Wild Cats - 2nd Grade and Up

Cougars, bobcats, lynx, OH MY! These aren't your tame little house cats! We'll talk about hunting, physical adaptations, and many other characteristics of these amazing predators.

Note:  40 - 60 students

Naturalist's Choice - All Grades

Too many options to choose from? Let Oxbow Park and Zollman Zoo's naturalists choose a program for you.

Note:  30 - 60 students

Due to high demand and low staffing, class rates increased in 2019 to $5 per student with a minimum charge of $50. We understand this may be difficult due to budget requests completed for the school year.  

Due to increasing class sizes and demand, we are currently only able to offer 1 class per student. For school groups of 100+ students, please book early to ensure a day that works. Please have the funds with you at the time of your visit. We accept cash, check and credit card payments.

We will teach regardless of the weather, but please recognize that poor outdoor conditions may cause us to discuss modifications to the scheduled class at the time of your visit. Students must dress for outdoor conditions!

We always offer self-guided zoo visits at no charge. Please call to provide the number of students that will be visiting so we can report the numbers to the regulation agencies of the zoo.

Classes Will Run Monday Through Friday. Thursday and Friday will have limited availability because of limited staffing. Morning sessions can start as early as 9:30 AM. We are flexible with our times, please call or email to schedule a class.

Things to know when Calling or Emailing:

  • Facility Name
  • Grade Level and Number of Students
  • Class Desired
  • At least (Two) Preferred Dates to Visit
  • Contact Person and Email Address

When visiting don't forget to plan time to visit the Zollman Zoo and explore the Path of Imagination natural playscape area.

For more options check out Teacher's Corner - Scavenger Hunts and Teacher's Corner - Outreach Programs.

We are looking forward to teaching your group and hope to see you this year.  Please feel free to call 507-328-7340 with any further questions.


Clarissa Schrooten and Jaide Ryks, Naturalists