Monday, September 22, 2014

A Salamander Visits the Classroom

A child brought a salamander that was found in the area.  The kids thought it was fascinating!  We could not believe how quick it was.  Several children and one of the teachers that stopped in had no idea that they lived in our area.

Usually when a child brings in an animal in to show, I seize the moment and teach a lesson about it.  We watched a really neat video called "The Salamander Room"  Click on the book's title to watch it. 

We discussed that just because we might not like how an animal looks or if it creeps us out, we shouldn't be mean to it because it is a living thing.

We did a bit of research on salamanders and found out that:
  • a salamander is an amphibian like a frog, but is closely related to a newt
  • it has a long slender tail, a long slender body and four legs
  • they have moist skin and live in a many places in the world
  • there are more than 700 kinds of salamanders
  • it is able to regrow lost limbs and body parts
  • salamander numbers are decreasing
  • in South Dakota we have the Mudpuppy and the Tiger Salamander
The Field Guide to South Dakota Amphibians site is interesting.  Click here to see it and look on page 42 for information on salamanders.

Here are some photos of our visiting Tiger Salamander.

Here is "Sally the Salamander" in its temporary habitat.
She loved her salamander!
Some kids wanted a closer look and some did not!  

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