HOMESCHOOL AND FAMILY PROGRAMS

Most educational activities must be booked at least three days in advance and preferably 4-6 days in advance. Shorter-notice bookings may not be available. For information, availability and/or to make reservations, please call (254) 897-2960.

HOMESCHOOL

Our children are homeschooled, too! Fossil Rim Wildlife Center is making a conscientious effort to design and implement programs specifically for the homeschooling community. Two of our main goals are to offer programs that are as affordable and age-diverse as possible so the whole family can be involved.

A great first event for homeschoolers to experience Fossil Rim is the calendared class-plus-tour combination. These are set events which any number of homeschoolers can attend. Private events may also be scheduled, which become wonderfully affordable with large groups! All homeschool events are offered at deeply discounted rates on Mondays and Tuesdays, or lesser discounts on all other days.

We look forward to hearing from you and accommodating your members.

Homeschool Course Descriptions: Class + Tour Events

Cheetah

Homeschool Class + Tour: This amazing cat, a hallmark species for Fossil Rim, is designed for maximum speed. They sure can move, but toward what kind of future is this species speeding? Come look, learn and fall in love with our 20-plus cheetahs!

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

Wolves

Homeschool Class + Behind-the-Scenes Tour: The relationship between man and wolf has been a rocky one, and you will learn how that interaction has evolved over the years. Fossil Rim has Mexican gray wolves, red wolves and maned wolves. Discover the habits and history of these amazing animals and enjoy the unique opportunity of viewing our resident wolves – possibly all species! This event is for homeschoolers ages seven and up.

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

Animal Capture

Homeschool Class + Tour: How do we safely capture wild animals? How do we make sure they don’t get hurt and we don’t get hurt? There are a number of ways. See demonstrations of the tools we use and get involved by using a blowgun and safety dart to “tranquilize” a Styrofoam zebra!

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

Vanishing Africa!

Explore the geography, wildlife and conservation issues of the homeland to most of our exotic species. Discover the components and the dynamic balance of a savannah ecosystem.

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

Creepy Crawly Critters!

Learn to recognize and understand some of the insects, spiders and snakes of Texas. Live critters present!

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

The Story of Red

Find cochineal – a natural insect-derived dye – in the field; learn about it and other natural dyes before taking action to tie-dye a shirt or bandana or pillowcase.

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

Hike

Take a guided hike with a naturalist and learn about some of our native flora and fauna.

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

The Lorax

Homeschool Class + Tour: “UNLESS someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not!” Discover this powerful message of natural resource conservation found in a favorite children’s book written by Dr. Seuss. In this program, students will have the opportunity to visit the Street of the Lifted Lorax and become a part of the story.
This integrative program connects the story of the Lorax to an endangered Texas native, the Attwater’s prairie chicken, for which Fossil Rim has an onsite breeding program. The experience is guaranteed to get students thinking about the environment, sustainability, stewardship and their role in it all.

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

Fun Finding Fossils

Homeschool Class + Tour: Fossil Rim used to be underwater! A lot of sea creatures left an abundance of interesting evidence that they used to live here. That evidence is found in our rocks. Find and identify fossils, understand them and how they got here. You can even take one or more home!

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

Nature Journaling

Homeschool Workshop + Tour: Students will have fun as they learn and practice four different journaling techniques in our beautiful setting. We will be back and forth between “the classroom” and “the living classroom” of nature. Student will learn some basic art sketch techniques to enhance their journaling experience, and then enjoy a tour with stops at selected sites to sketch and journal. $27 per person.

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

Family Fun! (Taxonomy)

Examine how and why we group living things the way we do. We can go in-depth on the groups that interest you most (e.g., butterflies, trees, birds, carnivores, cats, etc.).

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

Rhino Reality

Homeschool Class + Tour: Come see these true giants of the animal kingdom and find out why a rhino is poached in South Africa approximately every eight hours or less. We’ll discuss what role we can play to help them be pulled back from the brink of extinction instead of pushed over!

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

Rhino Mini-Tours

Homeschool Tour: It will last 45 minutes for each of the four start times (9/10/11/12). Homeschool coordinator Mark Phillips will take 12-15 people during each time frame from the Front Gate to the white rhino yard in a tour vehicle for an “engaging and interesting time.” The event will cost $15 per person, but a group of 5 will only pay $60.

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

Habitats & Biomes

Homeschool Class + Tour: At Fossil Rim, we emphasize understanding and valuing biodiversity; and biodiversity is packaged in biomes. If the world is a town, then biomes are the neighborhoods. Discover what biomes are, what they share in common and what makes each biome unique.

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

Birds & Birding

Homeschool Class + Modified Tour: Join us for fun in the classroom, as we learn about feathers, flight, bird families, bird behaviors and much more! Then, we’ll head into the field for birding: finding and identifying some of the 200-plus bird species amongst our 1,800 acres. We’ll also have close encounters with some exotic bird species. We will hike, so wear sturdy shoes and long pants and bring drinking water. 

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

Attwater's Prairie Chickens

Homeschool Class + Behind-the-Scenes Tour: In 1900, there were about one million Attwater’s prairie chickens on the coastal prairie of Texas and Louisiana. Today, in the wild, there are less than 50. Fossil Rim has a special relationship with these endangered and beautiful grouse. Come see our captive population, where and how they are raised, and meet some of the special people who are working hard to save them. For ages 7 and up.

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

Giraffe Day

Homeschool Class + Tour: Join us for an encounter you won’t soon forget, as we celebrate the official World Giraffe Day (June 21) with a class and tour! There are so many amazing things to learn about these gentle giants.

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

Composting & Keyhole Gardening

Homeschool Class + Tour: This day of fun, practical botany gives students the chance to learn and practice skills for their own home and yard! Explore a pollinator garden, examine a keyhole garden and learn more about the importance and beauty of plants!

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

Workshops

Dissection Lab

Do you want your kids to have dissection experience, but don’t want the mess on your kitchen table? Let us take care of the mess! Instruction on tools and technique included.

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

Conservation In Action Day

Learn about different ways you can conserve natural resources. Then, participate in an onsite conservation project before taking a guided tour of Fossil Rim.

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

Day Camps

Robin Hood Day Camp

Day Camp + Tour: Come join our merry band for a day of discovery and adventure! Take up a bow and notch an arrow! Discover the forest habitat and learn some skills for living in it! Also, learn about “The King’s Deer” (European red deer) and whitetail deer, as well as camouflage and poaching. $32 per person. 

Not available for class + tour option.

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

African Safari Day Camp

Learn about the geography of Africa and where our African animals come from. Then, make a savannah field guide, discuss savannah ecology, learn about cheetahs, discover the difference between grazers and browsers and take a guided tour of Fossil Rim Wildlife Center.

Not available for class + tour option.

If you have questions or would like to purchase a program, please call us at (254) 897-2960.

All of the aforementioned homeschool activities last approximately six hours and begin at either 9 a.m. or 10 a.m.

Family Programs

Looking for something special to do for your family reunion, school group or church group? Schedule a private education program for your own group!

Discovery After Dark

Come enjoy the evening beauty of Fossil Rim. Watch the stars and listen to the nighttime sounds, as we venture out into the park at dark. We’ll start with an interactive learning experience where you can discover nocturnal animal adaptations.

Then, using spotlights, we’ll go on a guided after-dark adventure that will feature both the exotic and native wildlife at Fossil Rim and allow you the opportunity to sit back, relax and enjoy the night. Participants meet at the EcoCenter located at the Overlook. Cost includes admission to the Gosdin Scenic Drive, which can be used the day of Discovery after Dark or the morning after before 10 a.m.

Reservations are required at least three days in advance. Call (254) 897-2960.

Price$35 per person

Fossil Dig and Hike

Are there any aspiring paleontologists in your family? Have you ever wondered why we’re called Fossil Rim Wildlife Center? After a brief introduction to fossils so that you will know what you’re looking for, we’ll head off to one of our fossil pits and dig in!

You’ll be able to keep at least a couple of the fossils you find. After the digs, we’ll take you on a guided tour through the Game Preserve, where the giraffes and zebras live, and up to Cheetah Hill. All ages are welcome.

Participants meet at the EcoCenter located at the Overlook. We will be hiking to and from the fossil pit area. Please dress appropriately for that day’s weather and walking. You are welcome to bring excavation tools, such as child-size shovels and picks, as well as buckets and brushes.

Reservations are required at least three days in advance. Call (254) 897-2960. 

Price: $35 per person

Nature Detectives

What animals have been here? What made that track? What plant did this leaf come from? Learn to use clues from nature to solve mysteries in the great outdoors.

Through this educational program, young children can begin to develop perceptual awareness of the natural world and an environmental ethic, which will hopefully someday become their foundation for ecofriendly behavior. Starting with a matching game, little detectives will have the opportunity to match plant and animal clues such as feathers, seeds and tracks with the mystery plant or animal that left them behind.

This will help each nature detective learn about native plants and animals in a fun way. We’ll discuss outdoor safety, such as plants and animals to avoid and how to be a cautious hiker. We’ll also go on a short hike and the detectives will see if they can find all of the things in their clue books. This program provides a wonderful introduction to the mysteries in the world around us! It is recommended for children ages 4-6.

Reservations are required at least three days in advance. Call (254) 897-2960. Members receive a 10-percent discount.

Price: $10 per person