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Cycle of Life Virtual Tour

Join us for an introduction to reproduction, growth and development. Pupils will find out about the changes that take place in animals as they develop sexual maturity.

Age Suitability: P5 - P7

Availability: Edinburgh Zoo and Highland Wildlife Park

Duration of lesson: 1 hour 

Maximum Class Size: 33

Session Outline

The virtual session begins with a tour to visit some of our animals. Your class will explore the similarities and differences between male and female mammals, the changes that take place as animals develop sexual maturity, the life cycles of birds and mammals and the differences in parental care. During the tour, children are challenged to observe, consider, discuss and question, interacting virtually with your zoo educator!

Supporting resources to use in your classroom are available for free to enhance your virtual tour, including games and interactive tasks!


Session Outcomes
  • To understand different stages of life cycle development
  • To recognise the physical changes that take place during puberty
  • To understand development of the young during pregnancy and egg incubation, including birth and hatching
  • To recognise different forms of parental care, including feeding and lactation


Curriculum Links
  • SCN 2-14a ‘By investigating life cycles of plants and animals, I can recognise the different stages of their development.’
  • SCN 3-14a ‘I understand the processes of fertilisation and embryonic development and can discuss possible risks to the embryo.’
  • HWB 2-47a ‘I recognise that how my body changes can affect how I feel about myself and how I may behave.’
  • HWB 2-48a ‘I can describe the physical and emotional changes during puberty, understand why they are taking place and the importance of personal hygiene.’
  • HWB 2-50a ‘I am able to describe how human life begins and how a baby is born.’
  • HWB 2-51a ‘I can describe the role of a parent/carer and the skills, commitment and qualities the role requires.’