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Walt Disney World offers a variety of free educational experiences for kids at their theme parks in Orlando, Florida. That’s right, the “most magical place on earth” is also a fantastic place to learn. Some examples include the Wilderness Explorers program at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, where kids can learn about animals and their habitats, and the Kidcot Fun Stops at Epcot, where kids can learn about different countries and cultures. Not only will children create unforgettable memories, but they will also be engaged in a fun and unique way of learning something new while they are on their vacation.
While visiting Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park, kids can become an official Wilderness Explorer, just like Russel in the Disney-Pixar movie, Up. The program is a scavenger hunt-style activity designed to teach children about conservation, nature, and wildlife. By completing different challenges throughout the park, they can earn badges and interact with cast members and animals.
You can pick up your Wilderness Explorers field guide at a few locations throughout the park. The best spot is after entering the park on the right-hand side before you reach the Tree of Life. They will teach you the official Wilderness Explorers motto and give you a guide that will contain a map and a list of all of the badges to earn. You’ll be able to hike trails, identify animal tracks, and more. There are over 20 badges to collect!
The Wilderness Explorers program also promotes conservation efforts and encourages visitors to become stewards of the environment. Many of the animals in the park are endangered and it is crucial that we all work together to protect their habitats and ensure their survival.
Not only will your kids learn a lot of information but they’ll be able to bring home a great souvenir as well!
Budding artists can participate in interactive drawing sessions with a Disney artist and create a one-of-a-kind masterpiece at the Animation Experience at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Located in Rafiki’s Planet Watch, this experience allows guests to learn how to draw some of the beloved characters from Disney movies. Since it’s located in Animal Kingdom, it is often an animal!
Each guest will be seated with a piece of drawing paper and pencil to follow along with the Disney animator while they walk you through each step of the drawing. The class is designed for guests of all ages and skill levels, so don’t worry if you don’t consider yourself an artist. I bet you’ll surprise yourself!
You will be able to learn more about the animation process and be able to bring home a unique souvenir that you drew yourself. You can check the times in the My Disney Experience app during your trip and the class lasts about 20 minutes.
KIDCOT FUN STOPS
Travel around the World Showcase at Epcot and experience several different cultures in a single day. The World Showcase features 11 different countries, each with its own pavilion that offers unique restaurants, entertainment, and activities to experience. Kids can explore the culture, language, and traditions of each country while participating in the Kidcot Fun Stops.
The interactive stations have cards that kids can color or a game to play with information about the country they are visiting and Cast Members will be able to answer any questions. For example, at the Mexico pavilion, children can color a picture of a traditional Mexican dress, while at the Norway pavilion, they can play a memory game featuring Viking symbols.
The Kidcot Fun Stops are completely free and they make traveling around the World Showcase fun for kids. They are a great way to introduce kids to different cultures from around the world and have a greater appreciation for the diversity in our world.
FINDING DORY’S FRIENDS FIN-TASTIC SCAVENGER HUNT
The Seas Pavilion at Epcot is home to massive aquariums full of sea life. You can grab a free Finding Dory’s Friends Fin-Tastic Scavenger Hunt booklet near the entrance to find the real-life versions of the characters from the movie. While the kids make their way around the pavilion, they’ll be able to follow clues and learn fun facts to figure out where to head next. They’ll be able to add stickers from the booklet to the pages they complete along the way.
The scavenger hunt is a fun and engaging way to learn more about the marine life that lives at Epcot. It’s a great activity to get out of the rain or enjoy some time in the air conditioning when it’s hot out since it is completely indoors.
Walt Disney World is not just a place for rides and character meet-and-greets. The theme parks also provide a rich array of free educational experiences that will inspire and excite kids of all ages. As Walt Disney himself once said, “When you’re curious, you find lots of interesting things to do.” So why not let your family’s curiosity lead the way and discover the magic of learning at Walt Disney World?