Each Nature's Newbies class will engage you and your child in unstructured free-choice play centers followed by a song and story! Programs will also feature a positive and engaging interaction with one of the Zoo's animal ambassadors to allow for an up-close encounter during each class. This class is heavily reliant on caregiver/child interaction.
Programs are open to children ages 1-3 plus ONE adult (parent/guardian). Programs are 45-minutes long (~25-30 minutes of which is free play) and take place outside by the new portables located at the south end of the Zoo’s main parking lot. Please dress your child accordingly. In the event of inclement weather or extreme temperatures, classes will be moved inside. You do not need to enter the Zoo in order to enter the portable campus.
**To provide the best possible experience for all participants, only those registered may attend the program (each registered child includes one adult). Due to space limitations, we will not be able to accommodate strollers inside of the classroom or additional children/adults as there is limited space in the room. Strollers may be parked outside of the room if needed. If at any time the designated adult is unable to attend a program, another adult may attend in his/her place.
Registration for all programs will be processed online on a first-come, first-served basis. We do not take registrations over the telephone. Class size is limited to the first 8 children who apply.
Deadline for registration each week is 8 a.m. the Friday before scheduled classes.
Fall Semester Schedule
Please note the following before registering:
Weeks 1-3 are completely sold out. There is still limited space in weeks 4 and 5.
Member Individual Class Registration
Non-member Individual Class Registration
By enrolling in our programming, you authorize any emergency medical treatment and allow the Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens to use your and/or your childs image for promotional and news purposes.
Due to the overwhelming popularity of our Early Childhood programs, we do keep waiting lists when classes fill. If a desired program is not visible on the registration site, please assume that the date is filled to capacity. To be added to the wait list of an Early Childhood program, contact the Education department directly by email or call 904-757-4463, ext. 101.
Date Changes / Cancellations / Refunds
Due to the high demand for our Early Childhood programs, date changes are not allowed. Cancellations must be received in writing by email or fax. No refunds will be issued for missed or cancelled classes.