Region: West Midlands

Disabled Facilities: Yes

Category: Day Trip Destinations

Address: Bewdley, , Worcestershire DY12 1LF

Contact: 01299 404888

Website: www.safariacademy.co.uk

Description

West Midland Safari Park is an award-winning visitor attraction, located in Worcestershire in the heart of England. It is home to a variety of all-weather attractions, including four miles of Drive-Through safari, the largest animatronic dinosaur exhibit in the UK and a theme park.

Since its grand opening in 1973, by the famous actress Sophia Loren, West Midland Safari Park has been home to a whole host of exotic species, such as bears, baboons and big cats. Presently around 140 different species call the Park home, including cheetah, lions, elephants, giraffes and rhinos.

The education department was initially set up 10 years ago, its aim being to educate pupils on the importance of conserving nature and the beauty of our natural world. May 2017 saw the opening of our brand new Safari Academy, enabling us to house even more future conservationists!

Set next to the Safari Drive-through amongst a natural tree-laden environment, the sustainably-built Academy contains five classrooms, where pupils are invited to explore the world of conservation. Suitable from early years right up to university level, a variety of curriculum-linked education sessions are on offer, from habitats, animal behaviour and adaptations, to evolution, careers and plants. Choose from a 45 minute Discovery Session, where some topics include the chance to meet some of our smaller animals, or a 90 minute Discovery Workshop, which is designed to develop practical skills as well as knowledge of the subject area.

Suitable for younger pupils or SEN students, a Creature Feature is the perfect opportunity to meet some of our smaller, friendlier animals and learn more about their favourite food and natural habitats. Or why not book a Meet A Mascot session, where the children can meet one of our costume characters and enjoy animal-themed games.

For those after something outside the classroom, guided walks around our African Village, Discovery Trail or Land of the Living Dinosaurs are the ideal way to explore the Park with an educational twist. Not forgetting the Safari Drive-through, our four-mile self-drive Safari where pupils can look for lions, tigers, giraffes and rhinos. Safari Rangers can make an amazing experience unforgettable - they will accompany your group on your coach and tell you interesting facts and tales about our fantastic animals.

For an end of term treat, our Adventure Theme Park has a variety of rides to keep your students entertained for an entire afternoon. Younger children can enjoy Boj Giggly Park, a multi-sensory, interactive play area which opened in July 2017. 

Do you have a video on YouTube or anywhere else that you would like to link to?
http://www.youtube.com/WestMidSafari

Are you on Twitter, Facebook or any other social media?
Facebook - http://www.facebook.com/WestMidSafari

Twitter - http://www.twitter.com/WestMidSafari

Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/WestMidSafari

Why you are you a great place for educational visits?
All of the above is tied together with a simple booking system (no paperwork or deposit needed!) co-ordinated by our dedicated and friendly Education Officer, Claire, giving a stress free and enjoyable school visit experience. We create safe, memorable experiences that are easy to link into the curriculum, easy to book, and easy to plan. Schools who have visited before come back year after year, and we continually improve our products based on teachers feedback.

Do you have the LOtC Quality Badge or any other accreditation such as AALA?
We are part of BIAZA, EAZA, BALPPA and the Children’s University. The only reason we haven’t got a LOtC Quality Badge yet is the fact that no-one has ever asked for one!  We would rather put the funds needed for a badge scheme into improving the school’s day out.

What does a typical educational visit include?
Most schools and education establishments like to combine the basic admission with some of our curriculum-linked extras. Starting with a coach tour of the Safari Drivethrough, following into the walk-through areas and finishing with a curriculum-linked hands on Discovery Session. A full list of our session and curriculum links can be found on our website www.safariacademy.co.uk but an overview of the topics we cover are: prehistoric; plants; mini beasts; habitats; adaptations; food chains; conservation; ecosystems; enclosures and enrichment; animal careers; WMSP careers; and animal behaviour.

What group sizes do you cater for?
Any! Our school rates are available for 10 or more paying people arriving by coach or minibus, but we also offer Home Educator Days in the year where smaller groups can make the most of the fantastic educational discounts.

Do you provide projects, teacher’s packs, work sheets or any useful information?
Each of our education sessions are designed specifically around the current curriculum. Everything we design for schools and education establishments is created by our experienced Education Team, who take feedback from local schools and focus groups.

Are you happy for children to take photos, video or audio?
Students can take photos and videos in all areas of the Park. We kindly ask not to take them in our booked educational sessions as it can be very distracting for the Education Officer delivering the session, which could be detrimental to the quality of teaching the students receive.

What is your process for booking pre arranged risk assessments?
We don’t have risk assessments that we give out to schools because we have so many different ones for the Park. However, we provide visit guidelines with risk assessment information via email with the booking confirmation, which can also be downloaded from our website. Once booked in, we can also offer two free teacher preview tickets per school per season to allow teachers to come along to the Park and carry out their own risk assessments. This also ensures they know the layout of the Park and helps to plan a stress-free visit.

Does your venue have an education officer?
We have an entire Education Team dedicated to offering the best possible experience for educational groups visiting the Safari Park. Our direct phone number is 01299 404888 or email education@wmsp.co.uk This will bring you through to our Education Administrator, Claire, who will be able to answer any query you have.

What is the cost of the visit?
For our main 2018 summer season: 

£9.50/pupil admission, £10.50/teacher admission OR £12/pupil combined admission and wristband, £13/teacher combined admission and wristbands.

Free supervisor ratio 1:6 (primary), 1:10 (secondary), 1:2 (SEN). 

Creature Features (30 mins) can be added for just £40/35 pupils, Walking Safaris (45mins) £30/20 pupils, Discovery Sessions (45mins) £50/35 pupils, Discovery Workshops (90mins) £60/35 pupils, Safari Rangers (2hrs) £75/single layer coach/mini bus, Meet A Mascot (30 mins) £40/35 pupils.

Is specific clothing required for the trip?
No. Although a lot of the areas are outside, so we would recommend sensible flat shoes, a coat for poor weather and a hat for sunny weather.

Do you have first aid on site or will the group need to bring a qualified first aider?
We have multiple qualified First Aiders and First Responders on site, with a dedicated First Aid Hut in the centre of the Park for guests.

Please list facilities available.
There are multiple gift shops on site and a whole range of catering facilities, including the new Dino Diner (in the Discovery Trail) and Burger Co. restaurant (in the Adventure Theme Park), as well as snack facilities dotted around site. To make it easier for teachers, we also offer discounted goody bags that can be pre-ordered and discounted group catering that can be pre-ordered in advance. There is a large undercover picnic area that
caters for up to 250 people. This is located next to the coach park and is free for anygroup to use. There are other  picnic benches located at various grass-covered locations around the Park. 

What are your facilities for wheelchair users?
All areas are wheelchair accessible, with disabled toilet facilities in the majority of the toilet blocks. There are different levels of accessibility for individual Adventure Theme Park rides, of which all information is available on our website. We are able to accommodate changing areas for larger children, but this must be pre-booked in advance. Please note: there is no hoist in our changing areas. We also offer sensory sessions and
specific SEN educational sessions to fit all pupils needs and requirements.

What are your opening days and hours?
We are open every day from 10th February to 9th November 2018 and are usually open from 10am until 4:30pm. Full opening times are available on our website www.wmsp.co.uk

Do you have any testimonials from previous schools we can include?
We have loads of testimonials, but not any we have asked permission to share at the moment. We will ask the question and share some shortly!

Is there anything else that you feel is important and want to include in your information?
Our fantastic, purpose-built Safari Academy is the ideal place for students to immerse themselves in a truly unique learning environment. We are dedicated to providing a safe, educational and memorable visit for all groups of all ages and abilities and are proud of our experienced Education Team, which includes qualified teachers, lecturers and assessors. We aim to make your booking as easy as possible, so if you can’t find what
you are looking for just drop us an email at education@wmsp.co.uk, visit our website www.safariacademy.co.uk or call 01299 404888.

As well as school visits, we also run Teacher Open Days, preview tickets, accredited animal diplomas and summer holiday clubs. We love to hear teachers feedback, so feel free to get in touch.

Other information:
Guide dogs welcome only in the Discovery Trail.
Visually impaired students/staff entitled to free admission.
Arrival pack given to all visiting pre-booked education groups upon arrival at Reception.

 


Age of Children / Pupils: Pre-school 5 – 7 years 8 – 10 years 11 – 13 years 14 – 16 years College University

Type of Visit: Adventure Playgrounds Environment Centres Green Awareness Indoor Activity & Soft Play Centres Outdoor Education Parks and Gardens Picnic Areas Safari Park Science & Technology Sea life Themed Attractions Wildlife and Nature Zoos

Curriculum Topics Covered: Art and Design Business Studies Citizenship Design and Technology English Engineering Environmental Studies Geography ICT Leisure & Tourism Mathematics PSHE Science

Months Open: All Year Round January February March April May June July August September October November December