The One and Only Ivan is a novel by K.A. Applegate, about a silverback gorilla named Ivan who lives in a small cage in a mall for 9,855 days and ponders his place in the world. The story is based on a real gorilla named Ivan who lived alone in a shopping centre for 27 years. Through images of the real Ivan and quotes from the fictional one, as well as interactions with biofacts and observations of our gorilla troop, we will explore the themes of this novel and ask ourselves “Under what conditions is it okay to keep an animal in captivity?” 


3 to 6

Curriculum Connections:

This program contains spoilers for The One and Only Ivan novel, so we recommend that your class finish it before the program. Can also be adapted for the illustrated book Ivan: The Remarkable True Story of the Shopping Mall Gorilla by K.A. Applegate. 


90 minutes

Time offered:

10:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m.

Program Fees for 19/20 school year:

$225 September - November 
$175 December - February  
$280 March - June 


Maximum 32 students