Tempted to offer some of my chicks to my child's classroom


In the Brooder
9 Years
Feb 18, 2010
I just placed an order for 25 chicks from MM hatchery. I know my child's first grade classroom would love to "raise" some chicks (I think that probably means brood no more than five of them for a couple of weeks max). I am tempted to offer to separate some of my CornishX chicks when I get them and give them to the teacher for her classroom, and then take them back when she is done with them. Is this a bad idea?

It would be a nice "project" for the kids
Would make my child feel like a star in her classroom
Good "chicken outreach" to the community
Might get the birds used to handling
Would allow me more space in my own brooder for the rest of the chicks

The "handling" done by 1st graders might not really be the kind of handling I want my chicks to get!
There might be conflict/fighting between my chicks and the classroom chicks when they get reintroduced to each other at the end
I have no control over conditions (temperature/water/food) -- something could go wrong and I could lose them

So, what do you think?
I think that if the kids learned some rules and the teacher helped them come up with the rules together then the kids would follow the rules a little better and could be self enforced - like no fighting over the chicks - use please may I hold the chick and must be seated when holding the chick..... I think it is sweet. If the chicks were a week old they might be a little more hardy. There is a lot to be learned from being around baby chicks and comparing it with baby siblings or other animals to how we are stewards to the earth..... lots of avenues for teaching.

My mother teaches 5th grade science and she's currently incubating 22 silkie eggs in her classroom
They'll hatch out and be raised until about 3-4 weeks in her classroom, and then I'll pick 3 hens and she can have the rest!

The kids will get to watch while the eggs are candled and if they begin to hatch during school hours, they'll get to peek at that. They won't get to handle the chicks often, but they will get to watch them grow.

She did this last year with guinea keets and the kids had a blast!
I think it would be a GREAT idea! You can talk with the teacher and set up some ground rules so the kids all understand what's expected and the best way to handle baby chicks. Also, maybe take a peek at the school calendar to see if there are any 3 day weekends, or holidays for the duration of the school year. You'll need to decide the best way to care for the chicks over the weekend AND over any long breaks that maybe coming (spring break) and if you will just take them home or if the chicks will be going home with other classmates to be cared for (and of course coming up with a very specific and detailed list of care instructions for the students and their parents if that is the case). You could maybe even set up a system to ensure the safety of the chicks (like the first week they're there you come in at end of school to check food, water, temperature, etc...and their general health. After a week if they seem to be doing OK, you could check every other day, and etc....)
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