If you have kids, I bet you have heard something like this before…
“Mommy, can I get a guinea pig for hotel next week?”
“It’s called show and tell honey, not hotel.”
“Oh yeah, show and tell, so can I have a guinea pig for it?” my daughter begs me in the car, her eyes open wide and a face full of hope.
“Just where did you hear about guinea pigs? Was Suzy talking about one? I keep telling you that you don’t need everything Suzy has.”
“No mom, I want to be the first kid to have one! Mrs. Lamont has adopted one for our classroom. We named her Snuggles and I am learning some really cool stuff! For instance, did you know that G-Pigs squeak and hop up and down when they are excited? It is called popcorning, isn’t that cool?”
“G-pigs? Is that what you kids are calling them these days? Oh dear. Well before we make this decision, what else have you learned by having a pet in your classroom?”
“All sorts of stuff! Guinea pigs are smart enough to know how to walk as soon as they are born! I know what they eat, how to take care of their habitat, and when they are most active. I also got the chance to name CareFRESH’s own pig and if I win, I get a scholarship! Oh and guinea pigs can live up to 10 years! If I get one now, then I can keep it until I’m old like you and daddy! Mrs. Lamont also says there are valuable PETCO coupons in the kit that I get to bring home next week, in case I too can become a pet parent! My teacher also said she likes the program because it covers particular education standards for science, math and language arts. The program seems to make Mrs. Lamont really happy since the entire lesson plans are already written out for her.”
My daughter proceeds to detail out her pets in the classroom program, while I begin to realize that there is no way we will make it home before stopping at PETCO on the way home. “Pleeeaaaassseeee mom, can I get a guinea pig? I will take care of her and it will teach me loads of responsibilities, pllleeeeaaaassseeee?”
I know what you are thinking if you are one of these parents; Why would I get my child a guinea pig if I am going to be the one who ends up caring for it? How will my child learn to be a responsible pet owner? Well, we’ve listened and come up with a great way for kids to learn about small animals AND get credit for it while IN THE CLASSROOM!
Without further ado we would now like introduce CRITTER COLLEGE.–a unique, fun way for children to learn about companion animal care and ownership.
The new PETCO CareFRESH Critter College helps educate students on how to care for small pets, such as rabbits, gerbils, hamsters, rats, mice and guinea pigs (Yes, this means your kids will have the knowledge to take care of the pets themselves! Woo hoo!). The program is designed for grades 4th through 7th, and it correlates with education standards for science, math and language arts.
To help teachers lead the “college” a kit is sent to the classroom which includes eight lessons focusing on topics targeted to young pet caregivers: choosing the right pet, care and feeding, and safe handling, just to name a few!
The kit contains:
- Complete lesson plan for teachers
- Student activity sheets for each lesson (30 sets)
- A DVD with eight episodes of “Dr. Allie McNally, Pet Vet in Training,” which introduce each topic in a fun way
- A classroom poster to schedule students for small pet care
- Certificates of completion for 30 students
- A voucher for free CareFRESH bedding and food for classroom pets
- Information sheets (30) on a CareFRESH scholarship annuity contest for students
- Valuable PETCO teacher classroom pet coupons
- PETCO coupons for students (30 sets) to take home to parents and become responsible pet owners
- Companion Animal recommendations and care techniques
Full kit information is at www.petco.com/CritterCollege. And best of all, it’s FREE, yes FREE to teachers! PETCO and CareFresh wanted to create a great and easy way to educate students on responsible pet ownership and share the joy of having a companion animal pet. Whether in a classroom, an after-hours day care center, a local YMCA, or girl/boyscout group, Critter College teachers kids how fun owning companion animals can be and how to do it responsibility.
If you are a teacher or know of any teachers in your community that would be interested, spread the word! We are excited to be able to partner with CareFresh to be able to bring valuable lessons to the classroom to help kids experience the enjoyment of animal ownership!
Did you have a favorite small animal when you were a kid? We’d love to hear about how they made you smile and were a part of your childhood!