Jim Fregonara a wildlife biologist with the division, says kids connect with being able to touch. "A lot of of kids really like the hands on stuff. We have mammals, we have mammal skins, we have beavers, skunks, opossums, raccoons, river otters. not only do we have the skins, we encourage the teachers to hand them out, let the students touch the skins and feel what a beaver pelt feels like."
Jim says they especially like feeling the skunk. they also get to feel more than just the skins. these boxes also have life size skulls.
"These are replica skulls of these mammals. this one is a raccoon, they can see their teeth and molars and teachers can talk about the skulls and teeth. We have a beaver skull here and the kids can actually feel these large incisors. And this is really cool because you can see how the food chain works." says Fregonara.
It's one thing to tell a kid how big an animal is, it's another to let them see for themselves. And there is lots of stuff for younger students, too.
"We also have puppets here, too, the beaver that teachers can put their hands in. we have a play that someone wrote and you can act out all the characters," says Fregonara.
An educational box that's as easy to teach out of as it is to get. All teachers have to do is give the Department of Natural Resources a call and ask, and the box will be on its way.
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