Sensory Session: Animals and their Habitats

Explore three different habitats and the animals that live there. Hands-on and sensory elements will help pupils to explore these very different environments for themselves.

Join us on an sensory story, taking us to a coral reef, a desert and the Arctic. Explore the different habitats using your senses and learn about the animals that live there by exploring real taxidemy animals in this tactile workshop.

Maximum group size: 12 pupils

In this session, your pupils’ experience will include:

  • Sitting on the carpet, if appropriate (cushions available)
  • Listening to and engaging with a sensory story
  • Experiencing a range of animals and objects they may not have encountered before
  • Touching and exploring real museum objects
  • Taking turns and sharing instruments with classmates
  • Making independent and supported choices

This session will be tailored for your pupils; we’d be grateful if you could share some information about your pupils’ needs when you book the session. Please visit our SEN/D Groups page for more information about the facilities available at the Museum (including changing tables and onsite parking for minibuses), a link to our visual story, and our sensory backpacks.

Please note that our Natural History Gallery is now closed as part of a major two-year redevelopment, Nature + Love. The rest of our Galleries, displays and Gardens will be open as usual, with plenty across the site to support your topic (including our free live Animal Walk and World Galleries). Our schools workshops are unaffected.

We will be opening a free temporary exhibition about the natural world, animals and their habitats, in September 2024.

Workshop information

How to book

Booking a taught session includes a welcome briefing on arrival, timed access to a lunch space, cloakroom facilities and access to toilets for the exclusive use of school groups.

Contact us to make a booking:
020 8291 8686

When you contact us please have ready:

– the name of the taught session you would like to book or topic you are studying,

– 1st/2nd/3rd choice of date and preferred session time,

– the number of pupils and adults attending.


Entrance to the Horniman Museum and Gardens is free of charge. Taught sessions and access to some exhibitions are charged for. We invoice after your visit.

£45 including VAT, £37.25 excluding VAT

We offer a bursary scheme for schools that meet a set criteria.

Planning your visit

See the School Trips page for other essential information including our risk assessment.

We are open from 10am-5.30pm, 6 days a week. Entrance to the Museum and Gardens is free of charge but must be booked in advance by emailing

We offer reduced educational rates for our Aquarium, Butterfly House, and Temporary exhibition. See the School Trips page for further information.

Charges apply to all children aged 3 years and over, and all accompanying teachers and adults, unless they are specific 1:1 carers.