Exotic Animals Visit Banneker Students


Last week students of Benjamin Banneker Elementary School in Milford, DE had the unique opportunity to hang out with exotic animals at school and learn more about the exciting careers in Animal Science. Barn Hill Preserve in Frankford, DE brought several animals including a Bearded Dragon, Baby Coatimundi and Kangaroo.

“Some students will never have the opportunity to see the animals other than in books, on TV or on the computer,” said Banneker Principal Bobbie Kilgore. “Students that had their picture taken not only had the opportunity to see the animals in person, but they also were able to get up close to and touch the real animal.”

All students had the opportunity to listen to a zoologist as they shared the information about the animal ambassadors. The Banneker students grades 1 through 5 have learned about animals, classifications, interactions, adaptations, ecosystems and how human interactions effect the animals. “Students need to understand relationships between the needs of different plants and animals, structures and processes, observe traits of animals, and understand the diversity of living things in a variety of different habitats,” said Kilgore.

This experience was not only a fun time for students but allowed them to learn what careers involve the animal kingdom. “We encourage our elementary students to be college and career aware and this brought yet another opportunity of that to them,” Kilgore said, “Students had opportunity to ask questions about the animals, and the presentation from Barn Hill Preserve included social studies and science standards in their delivery of information.”

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Barn Hill Preserve offers students the unique experience to get up close and personal with animals they may have never seen before. Students participate by asking questions, getting involved in demonstrations, and responding to the speaker, making the program both educational and entertaining. Barn Hill Preserve’s exotic animal education program is free to both students and schools and is funded by providing students the opportunity to purchase pictures with live animal ambassadors.

Each animal ambassador shared information about the classification of animal, range, habitat, diet, size and other interesting facts with the students. The students apply the habitat and range of the animals to the geography standards they are learning in school, such as Indonesia, northeastern Australia, Central and South America, the scrublands, tropical rainforests, islands and coastal regions.

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