Habitats, Features and Life Cycles F-2

Year levels

Foundation, Year 1, Year 2


See Plan Your Visit


Monday to Friday (during school term)


Aboriginal Culture, Animal Features, Australian Animals, Classification, Ecosystems / Habitats, Endangered Species, Food Chains / Webs

Immerse your students in nature and take a journey through the Australian bush at Healesville Sanctuary to discover what makes Australian animals so unique, how they survive and how to best care for them and their homes.

Program description

Students will spark their curiosity and engage their senses as they explore the natural environment. They will discover the unique features, basic needs, diverse habitats and life cycles of amazing Australian animals. Students will develop their scientific investigation skills, hear stories about Aboriginal connections to nature and explore ways to help care for wildlife.

Students will learn: 

  • About the unique features, habitats and life cycles of Australian animals
  • How Australian animals grow and change
  • How animals need food, water and shelter to survive
  • How they can help to care for wildlife and the environment
  • About Aboriginal cultures, stories and connection to the land and wildlife

Program sequence

Before your visit


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

During your visit

Connect and Understand 

Students will be immersed among wildlife and habitats as you explore Healesville Sanctuary.

With a Sanctuary teacher, students will be supported to explore using their senses and learn valuable observational skills to identify the features, life cycles and needs of Australian animals. By participating in guided discussions and listening to insights and stories, they will discover what makes Australian animals so unique and how we can help to care for them and the environment.

Your Sanctuary visit will include: A Welcome (for arrivals between 9:50am – 10.10am), a Sanctuary Teacher workshop (40 minutes), Spirits of the Sky presentation and keeper talks. Check out your Teaching Guide for other ideas of what to do at Healesville Sanctuary.

After your visit


Use activities in the Teaching Guide to deepen students’ learning back at school.


Use the Teaching Guide to enable students to master their knowledge and skills in real-world contexts.

Program maps and itineraries

Digital maps will be provided to you on the day.

Learning outcomes

Victorian Curriculum F-2


Living things have a variety of external features and live in different places where their basic needs, including food, water and shelter, are met (VCSSU042) 

  • Students will encounter Australian animals, learn to recognise their common features and uses of these; identify natural habitats and how changes to these affect an animal’s survival 

Living things grow, change and have offspring similar to themselves (VCSSU043) 

  • Students will explore the different characteristics in the life stages of Australian animals, including how they are affected by their environment 

Respond to and pose questions, and make predictions about familiar objects and events (VCSIS050) 

  • Students are encouraged to bring and consider questions about Australian animals, particularly endangered wildlife 

Participate in guided investigations, including making observations using the senses, to explore and answer questions (VCSIS051) 

  • Students are encouraged to use their senses to gather first-hand information about the natural Australian environment and the animals that live there 

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Country/Place on which the school is located and why Country/Place is important to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, and the ways in which they maintain special connections to particular Country/Place (VCGGK066) 

  • Students learn how the local Wurundjeri people are connected to the land and animals of their Country/Place 

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 Healesville Sanctuary 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