Child meeting box turtle

EDUCATION

Exceptional Nature Space

Brevard Zoo's Mission

"Wildlife Conservation Through Education and Participation"



Welcome to our Exceptional Nature Space!

In May 2017, we opened a new kind of natural play area designed to meet the unique needs of children with varying exceptionalities and their families.  The Exceptional Nature Space is a modified natural habitat that is both safe and stimulating. It is designed to be flexible so that it can be easily reset and reprogrammed to best serve children with different challenges. Within this carefully defined space, kids will be free to explore an authentic Florida habitat, engage in open-ended nature play, experiment, socialize with other children and learn by doing. Because this is one of the first settings of its kind, we consider it a living laboratory where we can also learn how to best serve this audience through on-going observations and feedback from the parents and the children themselves. Contact our coordinator Lindsay Mathisen at lmathisen@brevardzoo.org for more information about program offerings for individuals, groups or school groups.

 

  • Girl playing in Exceptional Nature Space

    Exceptional Nature Space

    Play time in our space!

  • Boy looking through telescope.

    Exceptional Nature Space

    Open Free Play

    Kid playing with telescope in Exceptional Nature Space

  • Friends playing in Exceptional Nature Space

    Exceptional Nature Space

    Exploring with friends!

    Friends playing in Exceptional Nature Space

  • Educator introducing children to a turtle

    Exceptional Nature Space

    Education Program and Animal Experience!

    Children meeting an animal in Exceptional Nature Space

  • Walkway into Exceptional Nature Space

    Exceptiontal Nature Space

    Welcome to our Exceptional Nature Space!

    Walkway into Exceptional Nature Space

  • Sensory board play area

    Exceptional Nature Space

    Sensory board play area

  • Child meeting box turtle

    Exceptional Nature Program

    Child meeting box turtle in Exceptional Nature Space

  • Gate outside of Exceptional Nature Space

    Exceptiontal Nature Space

    Welcome to our Exceptional Nature Space! Come grow with us!

    Gate outside of Exceptional Nature Space

  • Bamboo wind chime play area

    Exceptional Nature Space

    Bamboo wind chime play area

  • Wooded play area

    Exceptinal Nature Space

    Play time in our space!

  • Young girl petting a reptile

    Exceptinal Nature Program

    Who will we meet today?

    Girl meeting animal in Exceptional Nature Space

  • Young boy making silly faces in play area

    Exceptional Nature Space

    Young boy sticks his tongue out from behind bamboo in play area

  • Boy playing in sand

    Boy Playing

    Young boy smiles while playing in a sandbox


UPCOMING PROGRAMS & EVENTS

SENSORY NIGHT AT BREVARD ZOO 
Families | 5 to 7 PM
Fall Date Coming Soon!

Join us for a sensory friendly evening open to families with an individual who experiences sensory processing needs. During this free event families will be able to experience select areas of the Zoo, participate in sensory friendly activities and the Zoo’s Exceptional Nature Space will be open for play.  Event ends at 7 PM with last entry at 6:15 PM. Pre-registration required. Fall date coming soon. 

register-now


PLAY TIME

Come discover, build and play in our nature space! Play Time is a designated time where children and their families can explore Exceptional Nature Space during an open play session or a themed session.  Stay for a short visit or for the entire time!

10 AM to 12 PM & 1 to 3 PM

September 3 | Reptiles Rock (note: Zoo attendance may be high due to Cold Blooded Weekend)
September 9  | Open Play

October 14 | Open Play
October 27 | Fairy Tails

November 4 | Open Play
November 17 | Tree-mendous!

December | 8 Open Play
December | 22 Winter Wonderland

All Play Time program participants must preregister by emailing lmathisen@brevardzoo.org.  Quiet entrance will be available on the hour upon request.  Zoo Admission not included and not needed if just attending the program. There is no charge for Play Time. Dates subject to change.

Do you belong to a play group or organization and are looking for a great play space for your next outing? Fall dates are booking fast! Contact Lindsay at lmathisen@brevardzoo.org to schedule your next play time in our Exceptional Nature Space!


SOCIAL STORY

The following social story is designed for guests with Autism Spectrum Disorders to enhance their Zoo experience, but may be used by anyone. Please note that some exhibits may be loud on days that are crowded. A list of helpful hints at the end of the story can help caregivers better prepare for a Zoo visit. If you have any questions about your visit on a particular day, feel free to contact lmathisen@brevardzoo.org. Click HERE for the Zoo social story.

We reserve the right to combine or cancel education programs due
to certain circumstances. If this occurs participants will be notified.


REFUND POLICY

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CONTACT BREVARD ZOO

8225 North Wickham Road
Melbourne, FL 32940

phone: 321.254.9453

fax: 321.259.5966

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