Thursday, June 24, 2010

ant farms at preschool

Did you have an ant farm as a kid?  What about sea monkeys?  

Apparently these little creatures now fall into the category of 'retro pets'.

I know this because  Dr Harry, that jolly vet from Better Homes and Gardens is coming to preschool tomorrow to film a segment on retro pets.

I don't mind telling you that I am freaking out. Don't they say never work with children or animals?  Well, peoples, for my television debut I have the double whammy! 

To prepare for the visit, we have two ant farms up and running.

The old fashioned sort, and the very space agey looking one is called an ant-o-sphere:

It is basically a series of pods connected by tubing, or as we call them "ant highways". 

We caught some ants in the bush: 

And watched and waited, and watched and waited until they decided to move into their new home.

The children were really into finding out what ants eat and what their nests and tunnels look like. 

Some of them made signs.  I'd read this one to you, but apparently it is written in German. 

So, long story short:  it has been a great process for the kids, but I'm a nervous wreck.  I'll let you know how it all turns out.


  1. i think I can translate 'german' it is something about Old mcdonald had a farm/old mcdonald had an ant farm

    Easy peasy

  2. Thanks for your honesty. I chalk it up to the fact that some things go very right (better than expected, even) and others not so much. Our caterpillar adoption was a magical experience for the entire family; our pill bug terrarium has failed miserably. Good luck with the visit!

  3. Oh my gosh the big day is finally here Jenny... wooooohooooo!

    I'm SO pleased we were able to help set this up!


    Oh and once again you nature play tips are irresistible!

    Donna :) :)

  4. How exciting! do you know when it will show on Better Homes?

  5. This is exciting, Jenny! I can't wait to see how it turns out. I'm sure it will be great.

    That advice about not working with kids or animals is only a warning that they will steal the limelight. In this case, they're the ones who will make your job easy. Relax girlfriend! The kids will have fun no matter what, right?

  6. Well everyone, we had an absolute blast. I will post about it soon.

  7. the first three letters are of course german :-) OMA - this is for grandmother in german.
    i just discovered your blog and think i will spend now some of my precious night time.
    greeting from austria

  8. Hi Sabine - welcome :) Thank you for translating! We have several german kids at preschool because the German International School is just up the road from us. Also some Dutch kids - but no Austrians so far. The kids pick up English far quicker than I pick up German but we are lucky that one of our teachers is Swiss.