It all started with my empty nest, yes, my daughter had gone to college and that meant I needed something to keep me busy. What better idea than a temporary class pet or pets in this case. Our friend Scott from Be Love Farm brought us 6 chicks in a crate with a heat lamp and a giant bag of wood chips. We had our class pets.
The kids were thrilled. We set the crate in the back our classroom and pulled chairs around to watch them and then to hold them. We did a lottery and the children picked got to name our new friends: Goldie, Stripe, Taco, Squirt, Jeff and Bobby Moe. There was a bit of chick poop management but the kids were good sports and developed a system of paper towel shields and careful holding to avoid the mess. Many kids were pooped on, which was a very fun sport for those involved. Each weekend one of our families would take them home to watch. Nasra, Vivian and Astrid all had turns before they got too big. At first they stayed in the crate, then they began to fly up to the edge to perch. It was a great experience to watch them grow.
When the chicks got bigger we brought them outside inside the fence with our beloved oak tree and watched them find bugs and worms to eat. We got a bigger cage for them but they were getting too big for the classroom. We were going to send them back to the farm when Hunter’s family decided to adopt them and have them live in their backyard with their three hens not far from school.
In January, we walked over in small groups to see how they had grown. They did not enjoy being held as much as when they were chicks but that didn’t stop the kids from trying. They are beautiful birds and still fun to watch. Stripe turned out to be a rooster, so he has since moved back to the farm. The rest of our chicken friends will soon be laying eggs for everyone to enjoy!