Harrison Students Turn Their Class Into A Zoo

ROSELLE—When teachers say their class is a zoo, they’re usually not happy about it, but two teachers at Harrison Elementary School in Roselle are proud of their “wild” classrooms.

Sandra Nahmias’ and Marybelle Espin’s third grade classes recently combined to study animal habitats. They turned their classrooms into a scientific zoo in the process by designing and constructing 3-D animal habitats. Students studied the habitats of a variety of species and then set pen to paper and scissors to cardboard. When they were done, the classroom was full of the habitats of bats, frogs, iguanas, kangaroos, monkeys, octopi, penguins, spiders, sea urchins, worms and zebra butterflies. Clay animal figurines made the habitat lifelike.

Studying how the animas eat, sleep, move and breathe was an important part of the lesson. Students collected dozens of fascinating facts about the animals and compiled them into a book, which includes riddles and illustrations.

Mrs. Nahmias’ class also participated an Adopt A Species program, sponsored by the Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey. The class adopted a Piping Plover, which is a beach nesting bird and one of New Jersey’s endangered species. Their adoption will help protect one of New Jersey’s rarest animals and restore important habitats. The class received an adoption certificate and a one-year Conserve Wildlife Foundation membership.

Harrison Elementary School third grade students (from left to right) Abigahil Soriano, Jarly Charco-Reyes and Alexander Xoletl show off the animal habitats they created in science class. Photo courtesy of Jaffe Communications

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