Animals and Habitats


On January 21st, things got a little “wild” for the Hillside first graders. This AFEE grant, Outragehisss Pets, allowed students the experience of seeing, touching, and learning all about different exotic animals from the forests and the deserts.

John Tarrant, an animal lover from childhood, shared a variety of unique animals whose adaptations help them survive in their environments. Students learned how a tree snake camouflages itself in the leafy trees, waiting patiently for a tasty treat. They learned that chinchillas bathe in dust because where they live it’s too cold to take a water bath. Each first grader was able to pet and feel its soft fur, considered the softest in the world! They also touched a hedgehog and learned how those spiky hairs protect them from hungry predators. As each new animal was presented the children “oohed” and “ahhed” at the wonders of nature.

This presentation was a wonderful compliment to the first grade Science and Language Arts curriculum. The children were able to connect to real life examples of animals that live in forests and deserts.