Get ready for a silly story that could only happen in the primary grades.
We weren't allowed to have classroom pets. Allergies. Hmmmm. Do you know anyone who's allergic to lizards? How about goldfish?
Well, anyway, after we'd read those much-loved Fluffy the Guinea Pig books by Kate McMullan, a little cage would mysteriously appear in our classroom one morning. The children would go over to investigate and - lo and behold, buried in the wood shavings and with his own little food dish - there was Fluffy! So, okay, he was a stuffed animal, but pretending is okay, and pretend we did! You should have seen the faces on adult visitors as the Pet Person (yep, Fluffy rated a caretaker!) would take their hand and guide them to the cage to see our guinea pig, cautioning them to be quiet because "Our Fluffy is kind of shy"! So.much.fun! Fluffy also became the subject of much writing in our classroom, as well as the motivation for lots of non-fiction reading. We even wrote and solved number stories about Fluffy!
Like I said, only in the primary grades. And with a kinda nutty teacher, :)
I'm thinking that many of you are fortunate to be able to have REAL pets, so here's something I ran across that I think you'll be excited about!
Did you know that the Pet Care Trust offers teachers grants for classroom pets? The grant program is due to reopen on August 1st, so click on the icon below to go find out more. The site is also a great source of information and suggestions for your pets and their care.
7/18: I just heard from a teacher who's had a very successful experience with this program. Read about it at . http://sciencegal-sciencegal.blogspot.com/2012/01/pets-in-classroom.html . Thanks for sharing, Leslie!