New resident of the CMS family! Ms.Perez’s Snake

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New resident of the CMS family! Ms.Perez’s Snake

Ms. Perez, 7/8 Science teacher, Thugger, a ball pit python

Ms. Perez, 7/8 Science teacher, Thugger, a ball pit python

Ms. Perez, 7/8 Science teacher, Thugger, a ball pit python

Ms. Perez, 7/8 Science teacher, Thugger, a ball pit python

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Ms. Perez, 7/8 Science teacher, Thugger, a ball pit python

Last week, Ms.Perez got a new student–a snake!

What made you decide to have a class pet? “There was another teacher that I work with in a fellows program. I am getting my master’s degree in teaching, and she was the person that told me we could have class pets for free at a website. As soon as I learned that, I wanted to let you guys know so you guys can go pick a pet. It was just an idea that was brought to me and I said ‘ You know what, my students would like that! I wanna do it!'”

What are some of the problems or troubles that may occur when having a class pet? “One of the first problems was trying to decide how I was going to  fit that big huge enclosure in the classroom. I had to ask my boyfriend to come in. Like this morning, he came in and dropped  it off, and on weekends, on Fridays he comes by and picks it up. That’s one of biggest difficulties that I have.” Does it have a name? “Yes, his name is Thugger” Who is the main caretaker? “Right now, I am the main caretaker, but essentially, it will be the students. The students take care of the pet and it teaches them to be responsible, respectful, learn how to be patient, take turns.  We had a unit on food webs, so they should know that this is a top predator and his place in the ecosystem.”

What are some of the things you do with a class pet? “I let students take turns holding him in class so we would kinda rotate him in the classroom so people can hold him. Eventually, we are going to have to feed him, but he hasn’t ate yet so one of these days we’ll feed him. I think we’ll do research papers, too. Ms. Gittenger was thinking of doing that.” How did you get a class pet? “I had to fill out an application online. They give out grants to teachers, so they can get classroom pets for free. After I filled out the application, I had it approved with Dr. Skretta.  They sent me the coupons in the mail and I took those coupons to Pet-co and I owned a snake.”

Is it hard taking care of the class pet? “No it’s actually easy. Snakes are something that I would recommend to everybody because they are so easy to take care of it. It never poops–that was something that I didn’t want to deal with! It doesn’t stink. He barely eats–like once or twice a month. If he gets out, I just have to pick him up and put him back in. It’s pretty calm and chill. The only thing I’m worried about is when our ball pit python gets big–what am I going to do!”