Early Childhood Melbourne

The Early Childhood Program is an enjoyable and safe first excursion for four year olds. Each program is led by a Royal Botanic Gardens early childhood teacher and can be adapted to suit individual group needs. Teacher professional development workshops are also available on request.

Session times

All programs 1 hour and 45 minutes in duration.
10.15am to 12noon
12.30pm to 2.15pm

Program prices (domestic)

$11.55 per student (includ. GST)
$208 per class, for small groups (Minimum Charge)
Teachers / Adults free

Bookings and information

Melbourne bookings and information

T 03 9252 2358

Cranbourne bookings and information

T 03 5990 2200


Melbourne programs

Landscapes for Learning  NEW

Are you planning a garden or play space at your kindergarten or childcare centre?

Do you want the children to be an integral part of the design process?

Through the exploration of the plants and landscapes of the Ian Potter Foundation Children’s Garden, children discover how to develop an outdoor play and learning space that can be centred around imaginative play. During their visit, children will discover cubby building, imaginative play with natural materials, the sensory world of plants, real work in the garden, plant selection  and how these can be incorporated into their own their own kindergarten or childcare centre.

Children will take home a seedling or propagated plant to contribute to their garden space.

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You and Me Murawee by Kerri Hashmi

This program gives students a greater understanding and respect for the culture of the local Koolin. Students explore indigenous plants in the Children’s Garden, collect plant treasures and discover Aboriginal tools. Experiences include grinding and painting with ochre, meeting Waa (the Raven) and making a belonging handprint to take home.

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Introduction to the Gardens

Use your senses to explore the wonderful sights, seasonal changes and stories of the Gardens and meet the plants and animals that live there. Children will pot up a plant to take home, make pot pourri in the herb garden and collect garden treasures. Note this program changes with the seasons.

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Wonderful water (Available Terms 1, 2 and 4)

This is a water conservation program that explores the connections between water and living things. Experiences include ponding in the wetland and the sensory exploration of plants adapted to survive in arid environments. Children understand that plants need water by potting a seedling to take home.

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Homes and hideaways (Available Terms 1, 2 and 4)

This program explores the ways that plant material can be used as homes for ourselves and other animals. Experiences include a discovery walk to observe animals in their homes, cubby building, sensory exploration of plant material and potting an indigenous seedling to create habitat for animals.

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Food for life (Available Terms 1,2 and 4)

A hands-on organic gardening experience where children do the real work in the Kitchen Garden and make connections between plants and food. Experiences include planting, digging, harvesting (the type of work depends on the season), planting a seed to take home, meeting the worms and visiting the herb garden.

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Minibeasts (Available Terms 1,2 and 4)

Investigate the creatures that share our garden, explore how they live and help our gardens grow. Discover why plants attract and repel little creatures. Experiences include ponding, worm farming, a discovery walk, animal observations, sensory exploration of plants and making a pest repellant pot pourri.

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Other activities

  • Stroll down to the lake and tearooms for a hot or cold drink and visit the swans and eels.
  • Visit the rainforest habitat in the Fern Gully and discover the rainforest plants and animals that live there.
  • Journey up to the Temple of the Winds and take in the breathtaking views.
  • Take in the peace and serenity of the Gardens and find a shady tree to relax under.