Preparing the classroom
Now you're ready to provide a safe, interesting home for your classroom pet, you need to make sure you have everything covered. This checklist can be printed out so you can take it into the classroom.
- You'll need an appropriate space for securing caging, away from heavy traffic areas. Your pet will need secure exercise space, hiding areas, access to sunlight, shade and the correct temperature.
- The animal's enclosure will need to be able to be secured when adults are not present in the room to supervise.
- Good quality food will need to be stored somewhere on site. Bedding, blankets, toys, bowls, chewing materials and grooming equipment may be necessary (depending on the species). Fresh browse (branches and foliage) of a particular species of plant may be required in constant supply.
- Your pet must be included your school's emergency evacuation plan. Remember to include your pet in drills, modelling responsible behaviour to students.
- Make sure that any emergency plans that are in place while the school is unoccupied include your pet. Flooding, electrical outage and fire plans all need to take classroom animals into account.
- Contact details for your veterinarian should be in the classroom.
- If your pet will be left in the classroom overnight, make sure your school cleaners are aware that they are there.
- Make sure students are aware of the animal's need for privacy and rest.
- Keep a daily diary of your pet's behaviour and attitude. As well as being an educational opportunity, this will mean that even if you aren't at school, someone can tell whether your pet is behaving normally.
Page last updated: 22 Sep 2023