Today was the day that I shared exciting news with the class that I’ve been keeping a secret for a few months now. I wanted to build up some excitement and curiosity before making the announcement. So we talked a little about my visit this weekend with some special birds and I shared several photos of the raptors with the children. I talked about my experience of being able to get up close to them and how amazing it was. Then I revealed the news…
“We have live raptors coming to visit our classroom this week!” The kids cheered followed by lots of questions and comments. Here are just a few… “You mean IN our classroom?”, “Wait a minute…just us?”, “Real live birds are coming?”, “This is so cool we are so lucky!”
Here are the details. This Thursday at 10:00 Craig Newman from Outreach For Earth Stewardship (OFES) will be visiting our classroom with 3 raptors. OFES is based out of Shelburne Farms and offers unique educational programs that stimulate the mind and heart with the help of live raptors who serve as wild ambassadors. My hope is that this opportunity will help strengthen the children’s understanding of and respect for our natural world. As of right now his plan is to bring 2 owls and a kestrel. He is also planning to bring owl pellets for the kids to dissect and investigate. In the afternoon I am going to have the children make owl puppets based on what they learned about an owl’s unique characteristics. This is an amazing opportunity and I can’t wait to share it with the children. Craig visited my classroom with some raptors back in 2008 and it was fantastic and memorable. I know this visit will be no different. Here is a link for additional information regarding his organization’s mission. http://www.ofesvt.org/
I want to make sure and mention that his visit is made possible thanks to a grant from the Tari Shattuck Educational Foundation. It’s a local not for profit charitable organization that provides grants to teachers to help support growth and opportunities in classrooms. Here is a link for additional information regarding TSEF.