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This lesson helps to build up animal vocabulary (especially if done after the Farm Animals lesson) and introduces the phrase "Let's go to ...".

Lesson Procedure:

Warm Up and Maintenance:

See our "Warm Up & Wrap Up" page.


Teach the zoo animals vocabNew Learning and Practice:

1. Teach the zoo animals vocab
If you have plastic toys for the animals you can use them or you can use zoo animal flashcards. Before the class put the toys or flashcards in a bag. Bring out the bag and peer in – make surprised noises to get the full attention of your students. Slowly, inch by inch, pull out the animals – elicit /teach/chorus the animal name "e.g. What's this? It's a (lion). (Lion), (Lion), (Lion)". Then teach/chorus the animal noise (E.g. "What noise does a lion make?" "Roar!").

Play "Pass the animals"2. Play "Pass the animals"
Pass one of the animals or animal flashcards to the nearest student. As you pass, say "(lion) (roar)". Have the students pass all the animals around the circle, all the while saying the animal name and noise.

3. Play "Animals Match-up Concentration"
Play "Animals Match-up Concentration"You’ll need two sets of zoo animals flashcards per group. Shuffle them and spread, face- down, on the floor or table. Turn over one card and then another. The object of the game is to find the same two cards – which wins you a point. If you turn over the same pair of cards (e.g. two tigers) you keep the cards and remove them from the game. If you turn over two different cards, turn them back over and the next player gets a turn. The game ends when all cards have been removed and the player with the most cards is the winner.

If you have completed the Farm Animals lesson previously, you can include the farm animal flashcards in this game.

4. Sing the "Let's Go to the Zoo" song
Before the song, run through the actions in the correct order of the song. It will help to have the flashcards in order on the board or use our song sheet. Play the song and have everyone doing the actions as they sing along.

Sing the "Let's Go to the Zoo" songLyrics for the "Let's Go to the Zoo" song

Zoo, zoo,
Let's go to the zoo,
What will we see at the zoo?

Zoo, zoo,
Let's go to the zoo,
What will we see at the zoo?

Verse 1:
Lion, we will see a lion,
Elephant, we will see an elephant,
Monkey, we will see a monkey,
Let's go to the zoo!


Verse 2:
Tiger, we will see a tiger,
Snake, we will see a snake,
Birds, we will see some birds,
Let's go to the zoo!

(download MP3 here)

Gestures for the "Let's Go to the Zoo" song

The gestures are fun and mimic the animals being sung about:

1. For the "Zoo, zoo, Let's go to the zoo", have everyone walking on the spot as they walk to the zoo.

2. For the next line "What will we see at the zoo?", have everyone put their hand above their eyes as they search for animals.

3. For the animal parts do the following:

  • lion: look fierce and roar
  • elephant: make a trunk with your arm and make the trumpet noise
  • monkey: do the money scratching head and armpit gesture whilst saying "ooh-ooh"
  • tiger: look fierce and roar
  • snake: make a snake shape with your hands and hiss like a snake
  • birds: flap your arms like wings and say "tweet-tweet"

We also have a video that you can stream in class to sing along with (Internet connection required):

Let's Go to the Zoo

5. Play "Animals Walk" game
Have everybody stand at one end of the classroom. First model: hold up a flashcard of a lion. Shout "Run like a lion!" – then get down and crawl across the room like a lion all the time roaring. Then have everyone do it. Then do for all the other animals (e.g. "Stomp like an elephant!", etc.).

Play "Animals Walk" game

Do "Zoo Animals Play-doh"6. Do "Zoo Animals Play-doh"
You'll need different colored play-doh. Sit down the students in groups and show them how to make simple models of animals. Let everyone make the animals that they want and as they are doing so circulate and ask lots of questions (e.g. What’s that? Is it a lion? What noise does a lion make? etc.).

7. Read classroom reader "Sammy Snake's Birthday Party"
This classroom reader ties in perfectly with the lesson vocab. Before class, download and print off the reader "Sammy Snake's Birthday Party". As you go through each page, point to the animals and elicit the vocabulary and the noises each animal makes:

Read classroom reader "Sammy Snake's Birthday Party"Teacher: "What animal is this?" (pointing at the monkey on page 2)
Students: monkey!
Teacher: Yes, that's right! It's a monkey! And what noise does a monkey make?
Students: Ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh!
Teacher: Right! And what is the monkey holding? (pointing at the bananas)
Students: bananas!
Teacher: Yes, good job! Bananas! And do snakes like bananas?
Students: No!
Teacher: Let's check ... (reading from page 2) ... "The monkey brings some bananas. But
Sammy doesn't like bananas". You're right. Poor Sammy!

Read classroom reader "Sammy Snake's Birthday Party"

There are some new animals in the story which haven't been introduced in the lesson yet (zebra, bear, panda) - this is fine: elicit and teach the animal vocabulary and noises they make. Your students will pick these words up quickly as the story progresses (and when you read the story again in later lessons).

Try to get the students really involved in the story by asking lots of questions - e.g. by eliciting the food items, colors and even asking students to speculate what food Sammy the Snake will want at his party).

After reading the story, give out a reader worksheet to each student and have everyone match the animals to the food they gave to Sammy Snake. Then go through the answers as a class.


Alternatively, watch our video version of the reader (Internet connection required):

8. Do "Zoo Animals" worksheet
Use the "Animals 3" worksheet. First hold the worksheet up for all to see. Take a crayon and elicit its color (e.g. "What color is this?"). Then color one of the animals whilst eliciting its name. Do the same for the other animals. Give out the worksheets and have the students color the animals, all the time praising, helping, encouraging and asking target questions (e.g. "What is it?"). Finally, go to each S in turn, look at his/her worksheet, ask some questions and then give back with lots of praise.

Do "Zoo Animals" worksheet

Wrap Up:

1. Assign Homework: "At the Zoo"
2. Wrap up the lesson with some ideas from our "Warm Up & Wrap Up" page.

Print Outs / Worksheets:


  • lion


  • elephant


  • monkey


  • tiger


  • snake


  • tag



Songs & Readers:

Additional materials:

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  3. print= British English version - click the flag to open and print. Click the thumbnail image to see the US English version.
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