Saturday, May 5, 2012

Snail Crazy

Crazy Bug's class started studying snails this week.  I decided to build on her excitement and extend the learning by helping her catch snails at home.  Bad idea.  The kid has gone absolutely snail crazy.  They're all she can think and talk about.  We have to "play with" the slimy things five times a day.  (And how can you play with a snail?)  We've written snail poems, sang snail songs, and made snail homes.  Enough already!

But, on the other hand, we've learned some interesting things:

Our yard is practically infested with snails.  I never knew how many lived around us.  What else have we been missing?

Snails are both male and female.  Any two snails can make crazy snail babies. 

Snails' eyes are on their tentacles.

Cool stuff.  If you'd like to start your own snail study, it's pretty easy.  Get a glass or plastic container and add some leaves and sticks.  Cover the top with an old nylon held by a rubber band.  Go out on a wet day and look underneath the leaves of low-growing plants.  (This often involves turning halfway upside down to look up at the underneath sides of plants).  Pull the snails gently by their shells until they release their grip on the plants.  Make sure that you mist the snails and their home regularly with dechlorinated water so they stay moist.

If you're having trouble finding snails, another option is to make an outdoor snail house.   Simply turn a clay flowerpot upside down and prop one edge with a stone or saucer.  Put some veggies peelings inside and wait until nighttime.  Then lift up the pot and grab the little buggers.

If your kids fall totally in love with the snails, try writing an acrostic poem about snails.  Write the word "snail" down the left-hand side of the paper in capital letters.  Then think of something about snails for each letter.  Here is my daughter's:

Happy snail hunting!

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