My kids have always wanted a pet, but Mike has pretty intense allergies. We have been raising silk worms (currently waiting for eggs to hatch), and at the end of the year Emma’s third grade teacher asked if we would like to take care of the class goldfish and minnow for the summer. She even offered us a wonderful five-gallon tank, filter, food, and water conditioner to get started. We were very happy to say yes!
Pets for Kids: Fish
Fish can technically live in an empty tank, but Emma was very concerned that the needed some intellectual stimulation. We set off for the pet store, where each child was allowed to pick one thing to go in the tank. Anna was asleep, so they picked out colorful aquarium gravel for her, Emma added a castle, Lily a resin turtle, and Johnny plants. We had glass marbles and seashells that also went into the tank, just in case the fish were still short on interesting things to look at. I have to say that the fish seem very happy in their new home!
Emma’s class fish had somehow made it thorough the year unnamed, so the kids got to pick out names. Emma, Johnny, and Lily picked names for the three goldfish – basketball (top fish, named by seven-year-old Johnny), Orangey (middle fish, named by five-year-old Lily), and Foxtail (named by nine-year-old Emma).
Two-year-old Anna named the lone minnow Cat, sometimes called Kitty.
These fish are very low maintenance. So far the water has stayed very clean (we’ve had them for about two and a half weeks), and Emma is great about feeding them every morning. They really brighten up our home!
Do you have fish or another pet?
The Educators’ Spin On It, Mama Smiles, Planet Smarty Pants, Relentlessly Fun Deceptively Educational, This Reading Mama
Summer is a great time for family fun and learning! Check out these excellent posts from last week’s linky:
- Homemade Learning World Map from Research Parent
- An Ode to Our National Parks from Gift of Curiosity
Link up your favorite crafts and activities for kids aged 5 to 12 years old. My cohosts and I feature our favorites each week, and we may also pin your post to our popular After School Activities board on Pinterest, or some of our personal boards!
MaryAnne lives is a craft loving educator, musician, photographer, and writer who lives in Silicon Valley with her husband Mike and their four children.
13 thoughts on “Pets for Kids: Fish”
What a fun Summer project to take care of the class pet! My daughter has had a fish for over a year. Although she got bored pretty quickly with the lack of interaction from the fish, she’s definitely learning about responsibility in taking care of it!
Your fish look pretty happy! What a nice environment you created for them!!!
The kids really made them a nice home!
What an honor to take care of the class fish! We don’t have any pets but hopefully in the future we can. Just scared of the added responsibilities lol.
It was so nice of the teacher to offer! We are really enjoying these fish.
I’ve never successfully kept fish. I won one from a carnival, but it died shortly after I got it. I do love to look at them though.
I was worried they would die, but so far they seem very healthy.
My son has been asking for a pet of his own. He gave us options…a snake, a spider, or a rabbit!!! We are thinking a tarantula :-) From what I’ve researched they are pretty low maintenance too.
Tarantulas are fascinating!
We love our beta fish Shimmer. Your goldfish look gorgeous!
So fun! Will the fish go back to the school at the end of the summer? It looks like they are living in a wonderfully beautiful and stimulating environment. :) No pets here, though if i had to have one, I think fish would be my top choice!
The teacher left the choice up to us – we can give them back or keep them. I’m guessing the kids will vote to keep them!
We have gone through many small pets. The fish were the easiest and the most enjoyable so far.
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