Five school students and a keeper with a Lion skull.

African Environments, Cultures and Human Influences Year 5-6

Year levels

Year 5, Year 6


See Plan Your Visit


Monday to Friday (during school term)


Adaptations, Consumer Behaviour, Ecosystems / Habitats, Endangered Species, Human Impact

Take a trip deep into the heart of Africa to discover how our consumption of electronics impacts gorillas in the wild.

Program description

This program combines Year 5-6 Science and Geography to explore animal adaptations and how humans are impacting on their environment. Discover Africa through the lens of gorillas and the people who share their habitat with them. Use scientific and geographic knowledge to role-play the positive and negative impact that rangers, farmers, miners and tourists can have on gorillas.

Students will learn:

  • Unique features and adaptations of African animals that enable them to survive in the wild
  • Human influence on an animal’s environment
  • Social and cultural characteristics of the Democratic Republic of the Congo
  • How to take action for gorillas here in Australia

Program sequence

Before your visit


Use the activities in the Teaching Guide (below) to spark students’ curiosity before their zoo visit.

During your visit

Connect and Understand

During your Zoo Teacher workshop, students will participate in a discussion about African wildlife, particularly gorillas, and the challenges they face. Be immersed amongst animals and habitat as you explore the trails of Werribee Open Range Zoo. Students will learn about Zoos Victoria’s mission to fight extinction, how the zoo works with African communities to protect wildlife and how students can help too.

Your zoo visit will include:  Introduction (for arrivals between 9:45am – 10:00am), Zoo Teacher workshop (30 minutes), Safari Bus Tour (40 minutes) and keeper talks. Check out your Teaching Guide for other ideas of what to do at the zoo.

After your visit


Use activities in the Teaching Guide to deepen students’ learning back at school. Engage students to communicate their ideas and findings on the factors that are threatening gorillas in the wild.  


Use the Teaching Guide to enable students to master their knowledge and skills in real-world contexts. Students may feel empowered to take on the 'They’re Calling on You' community conservation campaign back at school to help gorillas in the wild to thrive.

Program maps and itineraries

Your booking confirmation email will list your group's education workshop/s and safari bus tour time. Each workshop time has its own map and daily itinerary. Paper maps will be provided to you on the day.

Program resources

Learning outcomes

Victorian Curriculum 5-6


Living things have structural features and adaptations that help them to survive in their environment (VCSSU074)

  • Students will learn about how African animal features and adaptations help them to survive in their environment

The growth and survival of living things are affected by the physical conditions of their environment (VCSSU075)

  • Students will explore how humans are affecting the habitat of gorillas through technology, farming and tourism

Environmental and human influences on the location and characteristics of places and the management of spaces within them (VCGGK096)

  • Students will discover how different parts of the community want to use natural environments and how this impacts on animals

Differences in the demographic, economic, social and cultural characteristics of countries across the world (VCGGK093)

  • During their zoo workshop, students will consider what life is like for different people in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in Africa

Plan your excursion 

This program is an outdoor all-weather program; the students will need appropriate clothing for weather conditions. This could include a raincoat, hat and sun protection.

School groups will enter Werribee Open Range Zoo via the Main Entrance. Organising teachers please check in with our Admissions team upon arrival. More information.

Book your education experience

Fill out an online form to request a booking for your zoo education experience

Request booking now

You will need to know the following to book your zoo excursion or online workshop:

  • Education program of your choice (if applicable)
  • Preferred date
  • School name and address
  • Contact details of organising teacher
  • Number of students/classes and their year level