The Zoo is open 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily. Entry passes are required for all guests, including infants. Plan your visit.

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Educational Activities You Can Do at Home

The Smithsonian's National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute is committed to supporting teachers, students and families around the globe. Below, you will find resources to engage learners in grades pre-K to 12 with science, the natural world, wildlife and conservation. Check back frequently for new activities.

Video Series

A forest scene

Explore Beyond Your Door

Grades K-5; Episodes 5 minutes long

Create a journal and earn badges as you explore beyond your door with your guide to the outside: education specialist Kaden.

Videos Journal Badges

Keepers train Asian elephants at the elephant outpost.

Wildlife Careers

Grades K-12; Standards: NGSS and Common Core

Go behind the scenes to learn about zoo jobs. A Video Content Guide provides questions and project-based learning activities for each video.

Videos Guide

UnZOOsual careers program logo


Grades 3-8

Get a glimpse of some un-ZOO-sual careers in science, technology, engineering, arts and math.

Upcoming Webinars

Self-guided, Interactive Learning

lemur tree frog

All About Amphibians

Grades K-5

What is an amphibian? Why are they important? Explore these questions and more as you learn what you can do to help conserve amphibians.

All About Amphibians

A shorebird, called a long-billed curlew, with a long, slender, curved bill, and mottled brown feathers flies over grasslands in Montana

Migratory Birds

Grades K-5

What is a migratory bird? Why do they migrate, and how far do they travel? Explore these questions, and find out how to make your home bird-friendly.

Migratory Birds

scimitar-horned oryx

Earth Optimism

Grades 6-12

Learn about six amazing species with conservation success stories that are sure to make you an Earth Optimist!

Earth Optimism

Clouded leopard in a tree.

Winter at Home

This 40-page activity guide uses the Smithsonian's vast collections and expertise to spark learners’ creativity and imaginations.


Animal Webcam Activities

Grades K-5; Standards: NGSS

Check in with lions, elephants, giant pandas and naked mole-rats. Downloadable bingo cards help kids learn about animal behavior and habitats.

Just For Fun

Digital illustrations of a cheetah, snowy owl and lemur surround the Zoo Guardians mobile game logo and the Smithsonian logo with "National Zoo" written below it. A line of icons in the background with plants, snowflakes, etc. represent different biomes.

Zoo Guardians

Rated E for Everyone

Calling all animal lovers and budding conservationists! Join Zoo Guardians, a new mobile game where players build their own zoos, care for animals and find out what it takes to be a conservation hero.

Play Zoo Guardians

A clouded leopard cub with large paws, rounded ears, a pink nose and tongue, wiry whiskers, and thick, spotted fur rests on a tree branch

ZooCrew Family Guide

Pre-K to Grade 6; Also available in Spanish

This activity booklet engages children and adults together in learning about Zoo animals with games, activities, fun facts, stories and more.

English Spanish

Wood thrush on a branch

Bird Migration Game

Grades K-5

Help Wanda the Wood Thrush travel from her winter home in Costa Rica to her summer home in Maryland.

Play the Game


Bird Nest Quiz

Grades 6-12

Can you name the nester? Use research hints to analyze nest photos and discover which bird built each nest.

Take the Quiz

The words "Look, Talk, Play" paired with illustrations of eyes, faces and hands

Look, Talk, Play!

Ages 2-6

Looking for "screen-free" options for your preschooler? Smithsonian educators paired some of their favorite objects, animals and artworks with fun activities in these five printable cards.

Download and Print

Classroom Activities and Lesson Plans for Educators and Parents

A gray catbird in a researchers hand. It has colored bands around its ankles.

Follow That Bird

Grades 6-8; Standards: NGSS

A science and technology unit that teaches core concepts through exploration of bird tracking tools and data.

Access the Curriculum

A camera trap photo of an adult tamandua carrying a baby on its back as it crosses a branch high in the rainforest canopy at night.


Grades 6-12; Some activities appropriate for younger audiences

Lesson plans, games and activities that utilize camera trap images of wildlife from across the globe.

Explore eMammal

A brightly colored bird perched on a thin branch. It has a yellow chest, red head and long, slender tail feather

Bridging the Americas

Open to Grades 2-4 in Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C.

Students from North America and Latin America connect through the shared observation and enjoyment of local birds. Use password bta4teachers to access resources.

Join the Program