You know how I love Nature Study. Well, I told the kids to be on the lookout for tadpoles. We live in a subdivision, and the only ponds here have alligators in them (!), but I was hopeful that somehow they would find tadpoles for me. I had read a blog post last year at In Lieu of Preschool about how they raised tadpoles.
One day, Shawn and Anna returned from a walk and said that they had seen a bunch of tadpoles in some muddy water-filled ruts. I got excited and asked them to bring me some. Yesterday, they were headed out for a walk, so I gave them an old container and asked them to bring me some tadpoles. They did!
I raised tadpoles when I taught first grade in public school when I still lived at home. I was able to get fresh pond water and moss for them regularly. I just kept them in a big bucket of my dad’s. We watched them develop all the way into frogs that hopped around all over the place. My class loved it!
Here I wasn’t sure how much moss or pond water I would be able to get, so I did what Genny at In Lieu of Preschool did. I went to the pet store and got supplies and asked a few questions.
We went to Petco and got an aquarium called a Pet Keeper and some rocks and water conditioner to make tap water safe. We added some of our pretty blue glass beads and some seashells. Then I put them all together, put the water conditioner in and put the tadpoles in their new home.
We have 8 tadpoles!
From Genny’s post I found out that they can eat boiled lettuce, so that is what we’ve been feeding them.
They seem to like to eat upside down!
When I first saw this guy belly-up I was afraid that he was dead. But then I found out that he likes to eat that way.
One unusual thing that we noticed about our tadpoles is that they have a spiral on their bellies.
You can see this one’s spiral tummy and his mouth.
On some of them you can see the beginning of back legs. They just look like little nubs right now.
They like to swim together.
The whole family is enjoying watching the tadpoles swim around. It will get even more exciting as we see them develop legs and change into frogs. We have a lid for our Pet Keeper so that when they do get their hopping legs, we will be able to keep them contained for a little while before we release them.
I also have a lapbook about Amphibians from A Journey Through Learning that we are going to be working through in the next few weeks.
I can feel a great unit study coming on!