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STEM Design Challenge at Zoos Victoria

Design solutions for animals at Zoos Victoria by taking part in Zoos Victoria’s online STEM Design Challenge.

Foundation – Year 10 students are invited to use their STEM skills, knowledge, and an engineering framework called Design Thinking to design enrichment for zoo animals.

This mental and physical wellbeing of animals is of the highest importance at Zoos Victoria. Our zookeepers need new enrichment ideas that will enable animals to use their senses, move their bodies and behave in natural ways.

Students will bring their enrichment ideas to life using the materials around them and they are invited to share what they create with Zoos Victoria.

All schools that complete this challenge and share their story with us on our online platform will become a Fighting Extinction School and help secure a future rich in wildlife. You will also receive authentic feedback on your design by Zoos Victoria staff.

Here’s how to participate:

Step 1 - Access the teaching guides

Your teaching guide contains everything you need to work through the Design Thinking process with your students so they can ideate, design a prototype, build, test and refine their ideas.

F-2 Teaching guide

3-4 Teaching guide

5-6 Teaching guide

7-8 Teaching guide

9-10 Teaching guide

Step 2 - Enjoy teacher professional development

Before you start with your students complete this FREE optional 1-hour on-demand PD that will help you teach this program from beginning to end

STEM and Design Thinking PD F-6

STEM and Design Thinking PD 7-10

Step 3 - Use with additional teaching resources to extend student learning

Use the additional teaching resources to help your students understand more about one of the four animals they are designing enrichment for:

  • Short-beaked Echidna
  • Alpine Dingo
  • Little Penguin
  • African Lion

Animal teaching resources

Vimeo Showcases

Step 4 - Become a Fighting Extinction School

Share and celebrate your students’ achievements by creating a 3-5min video of class ideas and submit it via our online platform anytime to get authentic feedback from the staff at Zoos Victoria. A maximum of 1-3 videos can be uploaded per class.

Become a Fighting Extinction School

Upload your video here

Want to work through the Design Thinking process with Zoos Victoria staff? We offer onsite excursions for STEM from Years 3-10. 

Need inspiration? See what other schools have done during our last STEM Design Challenge.