Conservation Classroom

K-5 virtual school programs
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Conservation Classroom is a collection of monthly lessons for K-5 students. Each lesson has four elements: wonder, engage, act and connect. 

  1. Wonder: Pre-program videos that introduce the monthly topic.
  2. Engage: Live, 45-minute virtual program with a Zoo educator. 
  3. Act: Synchronous and asynchronous activities to extend the lesson.
  4. Connect: Videos that connect students to staff with "unZOOsual" careers. 

Programs and materials support Next Generation Science Standards. Programs are designed for a variety of students to join and learn together, from small groups and home-school students to large groups or schools. Programs take place on Zoom in webinar format. In this format, audio and video is disabled but students can actively participate using polls, Q&A and chat. 

Upcoming Programs

California Sea Lion

Aquatic Animal Adventures

October 11, 2023 at 2 p.m. ET

Aquatic Animal Adventures explores aquatic habitats from ponds to the ocean and the animals along the Zoo's American Trail that call these habitats home.

Activities Register

A horseshoe crab and mummichog fish in the Delaware Bay aviary.

What Makes a Habitat a Home?

November 15, 2023 at 2 p.m. ET

From deserts to rainforests, what makes a habitat a suitable animal home? What Makes a Habitat a Home explores habitats around the world and some of the animals that live in these habitats.

Activities Register

A wood turtle withdrawing into its shell

Suited for Survival

December 13, 2023 at 2 p.m. ET

Suited for Survival explores animal adaptations from camouflaging lizards to armored turtles. Students will learn how unique adaptations help animals survive.

Activities Register

Veterinarian reviewing cheetah x-ray

Wild Medicine

January 17, 2024 at 2 p.m. ET

What happens to a seal who has a toothache? How does an orangutan get a checkup? Wild Medicine invites students to Join our team of veterinarians and other animal health professionals to explore how animals go to the doctor, just like us!

Activities Register

Plan Ahead: Future Programs

Join us each month during the school year for a different animal topic. See the Virtual Programs Calendar to register. 

  • Valen-TINY Mammals | February 14, 2024 at 2 p.m. ET
  • Explore the Rainforest | March 6, 2024 at 10 a.m. ET
  • Saving Endangered Species | April 24, 2024 at 2 p.m. ET
  • Discovering Amphibians | May 8, 2024 at 2 p.m. ET
  • Exploring Neighborhood Birds | May 22, 2024 at 12 p.m. ET

Register Now!


Contact the Zoo's Center for Learning Innovation at

Past Programs

Giant panda cub Xiao Qi Ji climbing a tree

Caring About Conservation

What is conservation? Why is it important? Caring About Conservation explores the meaning of "conservation," some of the animals Smithsonian scientists are trying to save and what we can all do to protect wildlife. Click "More" for program recording and materials.