Out of Comfort Zone

After years of using my mammal skull collection for education, I feel comfortable at this point talking with anyone about the adaptations these animals had for surviving. I even enjoy these discussions and look forward to greeting people who might be interested in learning some of the differences in tooth design, eye placement, and nose …

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Teachers Make the Difference

“I have a surprise for you today!” some teachers announce to their class as we enter the room carrying a cooler containing snakes and a box loaded with reptile biofacts. At that point, we realize that this teacher has not prepared the students for our visit, and they are not as likely to absorb as …

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Roadblocks to Education

After years of presenting reptile programs with live snakes in schools throughout Arizona, Colorado, Wyoming, Nevada, Iowa, and Nebraska, we have now experienced our second year of facing roadblocks from the schools. First Occurrence Our first such experience occurred last season when we spent the winter at Desert National Wildlife Refuge, 25 miles north of …

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Classroom Expectations

Over the past nine years visiting classrooms to present our reptile program, we have made mental notes of conduct we appreciate from teachers, staff, and students.  Recent Visit One of our most recent visits to an elementary school took us through a decaying neighborhood blemished with walls of graffiti, windows secured with bars, and trash …

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Our Favorite Grade Level

“So what’s your favorite grade level to present to?” We’re often asked this question, but because we don’t have a favorite grade level, we never have an answer. Instead, we have discovered that any age level, any grade, can harbor students eager to participate in learning. The secret ingredient is their teacher. Passion and Attention …

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How Important are Field Trips?

Field trips not only offer a break from everyday classroom work, but also a new perspective that may awaken a child’s interest. Perhaps, more importantly, however, field trips allow the teacher to observe their students in a different environment. “As a teacher,” says retired middle school teacher, Jeanne McCune, “you’re able to have the kids …

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Letter from a Teacher

Letters and emails from teachers and students please us immensely.  We have received posters created as thank yous by students we’ve visited.  We have received picture books produced by teachers and students of our programs at school or field trips to a refuge.  We have even received a Power Point program put together after a …

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