Carolina Biological OSE - June 2024


Forums / Early Childhood / Keeping PreK Engaged

Early Childhood

Keeping PreK Engaged

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Mia Martinez Mia Martinez 120 Points

I am currently in a PreK classroom and we are learning about snakes. I want my students to have fun and get a hands-on experience. What fun activties do you reccommend for PreK involving snakes? 

Rylee Flege Rylee Flege 2085 Points

Hi Mia!

I think that is so awesome that you are learning about snakes with your preschool students. They must be so excited about it! I think that one way you could give students hand on activites with snakes could be first by having them play with fake rubber snakes. This will maybe give them a little preview as to what a real snake is like if they have no experienced one before. Then, I would look into seeing if their is someone local that has a snake as a pet or even from an expert like a pet store/zookeeper/wildlife employee that could bring in the snake and share about it with the kids! That way the expert knows how to safely handle the snake and the kids could engage with the snake even if they don't want to touch it. I recently learned from the director of the Regents Center for Early Developmental Education that the more enriched experiences you can give kidds early on, the better off they will be in life as they grow up. Good luck with your snake lesson and I hope this helps!

Riley Bodley Riley Bodley 2665 Points

Hi! It is so awesome that you are wanting to make this experience as authentic for your students as possible! I am a student at the University of Northern Iowa, and we have been learning about how crucial it is for students to have hands-on experiences and just be able to explore. I think your students would love if you found someone in the area who could bring in a live snake that they knew how to properly handle to make sure students & yourself are safe at all times! You could even have your students explore with worms (I know they aren't snakes, but they are something safer for students that is easier to access). You could make comparrisons between worms & snakes also to really get your students asking questions and making connections to something they are proboalby more familiar with, since they problably see worms more often. I hope this is helpful & good luck with your snake unit! :)

Kaleigh Greufe Kaleigh Greufe 2555 Points

Hi Mia, I think it is a wonderful idea to teach your students about snakes. I am a currently a student a student at the University of Northern Iowa and we have talked alot about having hands on lessons for our students.  I recently went to our Regents Center for Early Development and we talked about giving more expereinces early on to children to let them to learn through discovery and in hands on ways. I have learned in different classes that young children learn best through play and hands on expereinces when they are leading the investigation.  I think you could introduce the idea with a fake rubber snake first to give the students an idea of what a snake is like. Then I would find someone who handles snakes and have them bring a snake into the classroom for the students to see and ask questions about but making sure that everyone involved stays safe. Good luck with your snake lessons and I hope this helps.

Christa Anaya Christa Anaya 385 Points

That sounds like a great idea! I think if you and your students are looking to get hands-on experience with a snake it would be great to have a pet ball python in the classroom if approved by administration. Students can learn how snakes live in their specified habitat while also learning more about reptiles such as snakes.

Anne Lowry Anne Lowry 8763 Points

For the next time, is there a family at school that keeps snakes?  That might be ibe avenueif havung a live snake viait ( all handwashing and safety procolos followed of course.  Look and see what Ken Roy has to say)

What about snakes intrigues them?  The way they move, the way the jaw can dislocate, the scales and hiw they overlap and change?  Movement can be modeled by tubes.  What advantages do scales have?  Who else has scales?  What snakes are in your local habitat?  What is the predator prey pyramid?  Is this the same as a friend or relative in a different area?  Why?

These are some ideas to guide a snake study another year

Love snakes....outside and at a distance


Joy Annell Cross Joy Annell Cross 550 Points

Hey Mia! I think its great you want to teach your kids about snakes! If you think they could handle it I see nothing wrong with bringing a small snake into the classroom for the student to touch. I'd just make sure the snake and the students stay safe at all times! 

Good luck and happy teaching!

Amanda Fraley Amanda Fraley 905 Points

Check out and see if there are any reptile rehab centers near you!  Most of these centers do free student learning experiences and tend to want to come out to schools and show them more! 

Jenna Guggenbiller Jenna Guggenbiller 1035 Points

It is so important to keep learning experiences engaging and authentic for students to learn to their fullest potential! This can be especially difficult to do for preschool students who do not have a very developed attention span. Learning experiences for all students should be engaging and interesting. I find the best way to do this is to make the lesson hands on and make connections to the student’s life. There is so much you can do with this fun lesson!

George Mehler George Mehler 1575 Points

Hello fellow science teachers,
I am replying you behalf of Funsciencedemos YouTube Channel that is home to hundreds of free videos for ideas for teachers and students to recreate in the classroom. Science is our passion and we are so excited to share our engaging, kid-teacher-parent friendly, and interactive lessons with you to use in the classroom or at home. Our videos adhere to the common core science standards, encompass a wide variety of science concepts, and are specifically geared toward younger learners. All videos on the FunScienceDemos channel come with an English subtitle that can be translated into almost any language, making science lessons accessible virtually any place in the world.  
We encourage you check it out and spread the word! We post new science videos once a month, please subscribe our channel.
The FunScienceDemos Team

Francesca Guido Francesca Guido 465 Points

Hello! I'm an education student located in NJ and I work at a preschool that just did some snake activities! We spent that week doing various activities where students had to physically make snakes out of PlayDoh, create a snake from the letter 'S' through crafts, and read some stories about snakes during circle time. Essentially, the entire week was about snakes and how they slither around and live! We also found a stuffed snake that we're using as our class pet. During the week, students got a chance to pet the snake and watch him 'move' through the class while they did their work. It was a great interactive experience! Wishing you well.

Mackenzie Jordan Mackenzie Jordan 300 Points

Hello! I think videos and even getting fake snakes that can be compared to a photograph would be very beneficial!

Jamie McQuillin Jamie McQuillin 205 Points

Are there any reptile rehab centers near you? I remember when I was in school, a teacher had a snake brought in from a reptile rehab center for us to be able to get that up-close and personal experince with. The snake's handler was also in the classroom, so it was very safe. Our teacher also had photos of the actual snakes we were learning about in case we did not want to get close to the actual snake in the classroom. 

Good luck and happy teaching! 

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