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Old 09-24-03, 07:35 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Grade 6-Herp presentation advice/help needed

Hi folks,

I have been asked by my kids grade 6 teacher to put on a mini herp show for the classes (50 Kids) I am requesting some help on this matter the from those of you with experience in this field.
And yes, this will be a first for me.

I figure Iíll bring the following:
- Ball python Adult, sub adult
- BRB,
- Corn or mex king
- Normal leo, Tangerine leo- Can talk about morphs, if I can understand it myself in time
- Ackie
- Albig. or Dumerlli monitor

So, may I here some of your experiences, what you discussed, what I should be prepared for, what precautions I need to take and generally any comments you can share.

Also, if anyone has a brief documents on the basics such as:
Latin Names, Distribution and habitat, General Characteristics including-what they eat in the wild of the above species may I have it? or a link to this type of info?

Thank you for your help
Brian
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Old 09-25-03, 01:12 AM   #2 (permalink)
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uhm i'd say don't let them touch your herps, i remember when i was younger some kid got bit by a lizard. it wasn't big but still u could get in deep S****...

educate them and tell them to look with their eyes not with their hands.
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Old 09-25-03, 02:02 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Let your kids hold the herps, that way they get to be up front and it makes it a family affair.
I'd skip the latin names, but saying where they're from, what kind of teritory they live in and what they eat (maybe bring samples for the lizards) would be cool. I'd stay away from getting too detailed in morphs other then saying they come in different colours.

Be prepared for the steve irwin comparison. as for the poisonous/venomous date, I'd not even get into that, I don't feel most would care.

Keep each species to about 3 - 5 minutes and save the snakes for last. You might want a stuffed snake at first to calm anyone that's terrified of snakes. also bring up the fact the snakes just want to be left alone.
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Old 09-25-03, 04:39 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I'm feeling to lazy to type Brian so I'll call you. I just did another one for my new school this year. Brian you will love it! School herp shows are so rewarding.
Trevor
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Old 09-25-03, 06:29 AM   #5 (permalink)
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The Teacher said they are not allowed to touch the herps BTW.

Thanks for the thoughts above

Trevor did you have any handouts?

Regards
Brian
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Old 09-25-03, 06:49 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Hi Brian,
I did educational shows in the past and they are a lot of fun!
Be prepared for some really great questions though, and trust me some of them will stump you.
My experience was that with most of the kids they were really interested in what a "cool pet" a snake or lizard would make. They did not understand, however, how long they live and that they are not always welcomed by parents or landlords.
I could send you some of the information I used in shows and some ideas of what the kids wanted if you are interested.
If you have any snake shed skins take them along the kids can at least touch that if they cannot touch the reptiles.
Good luck
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Old 09-25-03, 07:41 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Good luck Brian, I get to go to the 1st grade class tommarow, went last year really enjoyed it. Some kids asked about the snakes all year,seems the wife and I made an impression. Have fun!!!!!!!!
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Old 09-25-03, 07:49 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Well hello Graycen, and welcome to the site, if the above post is an example of things to come you will be a very much welcomed addition to the site.

Good idea about the sheds, I Knew I was saving them for a reason, and yes please send me any ideas and info you think will help...if you want email me just click the button on the top right corner.

Thanks
Brian
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Last edited by asphyxia; 09-25-03 at 07:51 AM..
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Old 09-25-03, 08:19 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Hi Brian

Our educational shows focus on conservation. Make mention of reptiles being raised in captivity, and the negative impact on taking animals from the wild. Also mention the hazards of letting a captive pet go in the wild, where they are not native to the area.

Kids always wonder if the animal bites, or is venomous. We let them know that all animals have the potential to bite, but that these were raised in captivity and are used to people, so they are less likely to bite. We keep posters of venomous snake bites to show why we chose not to keep those.

Dont forget to mention the appeal of reptiles as pets - most are caged, they do not have hair or feathers to be allergic to, and most snakes can be left with a big bowl of clean water when on vacation. They do not need to be taken for walks, and most landlords will allow tenants to keep an aquarium - some do not care to know what it is you KEEP in the aquarium.

When allowed, set out some rules for touching. Make sure they approach one at a time, and no touching onth head or face. At times, Ryan will have the kids touch the face of the person sitting next to them, to see how much THEY like it. They usually get it right away. Let them know that with all pets, they should wash their hands after touching or holding. It is not necessary to throw the salmonella issue out there, just a simple explanation that you do not know that the person who last touched the snake or lizard was not picking their nose, or used the washroom and did not wash their hands.

When the salmonella issue arises, we point out that every week people end up in intensive care, and some die, from eating improperly cooked or prepared buffet food and chicken from Safeway. But when a reptile causes salmonella, it becomes national news.

We have a few props, such as snake skins, snake eggs, fossils and taxidermy to let the kids have some hands on when there is no contact with the live animals.

Hope this helps

Ryan and Sheila
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Old 09-25-03, 02:23 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I'm a teacher and I let them touch my herps??? Oh well it is what ever the teacher is comfortable with. I'm still going to call ya and fill you in on how I do. I had a BP at school today actually.
Cheers,
Trevor
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Old 09-25-03, 03:43 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Thanks Frankie,
Ryan and Sheila, Thanks that info will help.

Trevor, sounds good man, If you want call on late Saturday afternoon, when you have the waybill and flight Numbers, and I have your new boas.

Regards
Brian
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Old 09-25-03, 06:06 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Ryan and Sheila made a lot of good points. I would also like to add my sort of "guideline" I use that I have found works well

*Introduce the animal by name
*Have them guess what it is
*Tell them what it is (if they are right, if they arent correct them)
*Ask if they think it is full grown or not
*Ask where they think he comes from, environment and location
*What he might eat
*Cover things like lifespan, husbandry, captive requirements, safety when handling them, give reasons for everything
*Go into status in the wild and some of its habits in the wild and how it varies from that in captivity
*Question and asnwer period at the end of each animal

Main parts are just to keep the audience involved and not just you talking to them, have them ask questions at the end and always elaborate and go into detail about all points that you can. Express the amount of responsibility these animals are as well. Hope this helped a little Good luck with your presentation
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Old 09-25-03, 09:48 PM   #13 (permalink)
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There are many different ways to do a show. Our shows focus more on the science and natural history. What makes them unique, reptiles in general and specific to the animal we are holding at the time. We typically have 15 or so different species, covering as much of the spectrum of reptiles as possible (mostly due to a one hour time schedule). We typically do not discuss husbandry or pet care outside of audience questions.

GD
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Old 09-26-03, 08:28 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Good adviceagain thanks again, I have started my home work and sounds like its going to be a great day had by all.

Thanks
Brian
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Old 10-09-03, 06:31 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Well folks, the show is 9:00 tomorrow morning, and I believe I'm set...any last minute pointers?

And thanks again to all who posted

Regards
Brian
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Last edited by asphyxia; 10-09-03 at 06:44 PM..
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