Four students looking at their Ipads while studying in a ranger hut.

Gorillas, Geography and Us

Year levels

Year 9 & Year 10


$19 per student


Monday to Friday (during the school term)

Student Ratio

1 adult for every 10 students


Consumer Behaviour, Endangered Species, Human Impact, Resource Management

Take a trip deep into the heart of Africa to discover how our obsession with electronics affects the mighty gorilla.

Program Description

Explore the diverse habitats and fauna of Africa, walking the path of the gorillas to understand the threats these mighty animals face in the wild.

Step deep into the African wilderness to discover the gorilla and other animals that call this continent home. You’ll see, up-close, how these animals have adapted for survival in their habitats.

Sadly, gorillas and coltan share a home. Coltan is an important mineral used in the production of mobile phones and other electronics. As our need for coltan increases, habitats are quickly being destroyed, leaving the gorilla critically endangered. Through role-play, students will understand the impacts of rangers, farmers, miners and tourists in Congo and explore the social, environmental and political issues affecting gorillas. Also learn how to support the work of Gorilla Doctors to protect this incredible animal.

After their African Experience, students will communicate their ideas and present their findings on the factors that are threatening gorillas in the wild, and feel empowered to take the ‘They’re Calling on You’ community conservation campaign back to school.

Students will learn:

  • The unique qualities of African animals and how they are adapted for their environments
  • How the demand for technology is driving coltan mining in the Congo
  • An understanding of the demographic, economic, social and cultural influences impacting gorilla numbers
  • How we, here in Australia, can support communities and gorillas in Africa
Activity Duration
Welcome and introduction to your day (arrivals between 9.50 - 10.05am) 10 minutes
Workshop with Werribee Open Range Zoo teacher
30 minutes
Safari bus tour 40 minutes
Self-guided walking trails and options to join educational keeper talks  1 – 4 hours

Learning outcomes

Victorian Curriculum 9 – 10

Geographical Knowledge

Environmental, economic and technological factors that influence environmental change and human responses to its management (VCGGK145)

  • Students will explore how the demand for technology is driving Coltan mining in the Congo, causing habitat loss for gorillas in the wild, and how phone recycling can be a solution to this issue

Issues affecting the development of places and their impact on human wellbeing, drawing on a study from a developing country or region in Africa, South America or the Pacific Islands (VCGGK153)

  • Through participating in a role play activity, students will consider what life is like for children miners, rangers, farmers and tourists in the Congo and how their roles impact each other, the environment and the wildlife
Ethical Capability

Explore a range of ethical problems and examine the extent to which different positions are related to commonly held ethical concepts and principles, considering the influence of cultural norms, religion, world views and philosophical thought (VCECU020)

  • Through participating in a role play activity, students will consider what life is like for children miners, rangers, farmers and tourists in the Congo and how we here in Australia can support communities and gorillas in Africa through recycling mobile phones

Plan your excursion 

An African Experience is an outdoor all-weather program; the students will need appropriate clothing for weather conditions. This could include a raincoat, hat and sun protection. Please bring any old mobile phones to donate to They're Calling On You.

The organising teacher should make themselves known to Admission Staff prior to entering the Zoo so that payment can be made. More information 

Book your excursion

Call (03) 9340 2788

You will need the following to book your excursion:

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