During my trip to the safari, I witnessed a unique program popularly known as the ‘Wildlife Safari’s Reach out Program’ which in essence took the zoo to different places. The park had customized the program to reach out to meet the needs of schools, scoutings, churches, and other similar groups. The education animals and staff were available for different types of events including community service events, fairs, festivals, presentations, and guest speaking engagements.
Later, I called their Director of Education, Keith Barger, call (541) 679-6761-ext. 221 to bring the zoo to my daughter’s birthday party.
School at the Zoo
I suggested the school authorities at my daughter’s school to visit the wildlife safari for scientific field trips.
The education department gave the students a guided tour to meet the learning needs of the students. They traveled through the entire park, while the zoo staff pointed out each individual species, giving interesting facts and answering questions. They were flexible in adjusting their talk to meet the curriculum and learning objectives of the class.
My daughter’s class received a hands-on interaction with their education presentation. Other behind-the-scenes experiences were also added, including a sika deer or elephant feed, amongst others. These experiences were similar in content to our encounters at the park.
Shadow the Ranger
As a part of their educational requirement, I witnessed many students enroll in the ‘shadow the ranger’ program. It allowed students to work alongside the safari staff from most departments, including carnivores, ungulates, elephants, village, horticulture, and veterinary, at the discretion of the safari staff. Students assisted the staff with daily chores and were involved with all activities and projects.
This program was designed for high school juniors and seniors and community colleges students.