Do Kids Need A Classroom Pet (The Four-Legged Variety)?


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It is a tragic reality that many (most?) children sitting in the classrooms today have not had an opportunity to enjoy and look after a household pet. This is sad because owning a pet brings many benefits to a child – from enjoying the companionship of another living creature (many kids these days don’t have siblings either) to fostering organisation and responsibility.

Some schools have stepped into the breach by replacing the home pet with a classroom pet – most schools opt for a low maintenance species, such as guinea pigs or fish. However this raises a number of questions: Who feeds the pet, cleans the cage, takes it to the Vet? Today’s teachers are busy enough as it is to take on another ‘dependent’ in the classroom.

One solution may be to have dedicated budget and staff time for looking after the pet but most schools are already strapped for money and time. I feel strongly that given the wealth of benefits pets impart to people and especially children, the need for a pet in the classroom should be viewed the same way as a need for textbooks. And pets are more fun, too.

Click on the link to read Strategies for Improving Classroom Interactions

Click on the link to read Why Spelling is Important

Click on the link to read Tips for Engaging the Struggling Learner

Click on the link to read the Phonics debate.

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2 Responses to “Do Kids Need A Classroom Pet (The Four-Legged Variety)?”

  1. John Tapscott Says:

    It’s not in the NAPLAN Test.

  2. Rachel Van Says:

    So true! To address the cost, visit It is a grant program called Pets in the Classroom that provides up to $150 to pre-K-8th grade teachers for the purpose of purchasing a classroom pet and/or pet supplies. The website also has some great information on why having a pet in the classroom is so beneficial and how to properly care for your classroom pet.

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