Monday, January 7, 2013

Can We Get A Class Pet? Freebie!

If you have been reading my blog for a bit, you might already know that my kiddos have a way of "hijacking" my lessons as I like to call it. I already told you about the time one of them brought in a tomato hornworm, but that wasn't the only time.  We will be in the middle of something I had planned when one of them will go on a tangent and the next thing I know we are in a learning frenzy.  I am learning to love their spontaneous lessons as I let go more and more to their student centered learning.

A few weeks before Christmas break it happened again.  We were in the middle of our morning meeting and I don't remember what happened right before (if anything) a student raised his hand (YEAH - Following rule #2 Raise your hand for permission to speak - yes I am a WBT addict).  Anyway, he asks, "Mrs. Malloy, could we get a class pet?"

And the lesson was on!

Could we get a class pet? Could we? What do we have to do? Let's write down all of our questions.

Who would we have to ask/convince? Mrs. Malloy and our principal.

How much would it cost? How could we pay for it? Off to the computers to research pet costs and pet grants. "We could apply for a grant Mrs. Malloy!!!!"

What type of pet should we get? More research, Photobucket and maybe we should take a vote!

Asking and answering questions while reading Non-fiction texts is the common core standard we were focused on - and I think my formative assessment would say they got it!

Then we were off to write persuasive letters to both Mrs. Malloy and our principal. We also wrote about our pet with a research project.  We made a budget and applied for a grant (which we received!).  Fun, fun learning with a real world purpose! Loved it!

So... I decided to create a unit based on what we did over the holiday break and this is what I came up with:

Can We Get A Class Pet? A Lesson in Persuasive Writing and  Can We Get A Class Pet? A Lesson in Persuasive Writing andCan We Get A Class Pet? A Lesson in Persuasive Writing andCan We Get A Class Pet? A Lesson in Persuasive Writing and

If you are thinking about getting a pet for your classroom, you will also want to check out this great blog:
Critters in the Classroom

Download the preview for a freebie!  And, I am giving away this unit to a few of my followers! Be one of the first three commenters with you email address and I will send it your way!

Hopefully the pics are ok in this post- Blogger is being a problem today :(   


  1. Oh my gosh! This reminds me of my first year teaching. A group of girls wanted a class pet, so I said that I would go along with it if they would figure everything out. They did a class survey of pet allergies, ask the custodian, got donated supplies and food, arrange who would take it home on the weekends, clean the cage, feed it.... I couldn't say no! We ended up getting a gerbil, which a family graciously adopted at the end of the school year :)

    Fifth in the Middle

  2. It is amazing how much work they put into something when they want it! Wish they were this excited about Daily 5! LOL!

  3. What a great learning experience for your students!

    I work with Pets in the Classroom, the grant program you discuss in your blog. Thank you for mentioning us! Would you mind if we discussed your blog in one of our own blog posts?


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