This last week, we loaned Vashon Classroom our Guinea Pigs so that they could try out having animals in their classroom. They’ve been wanting to have animals and they wanted to make sure it would work out. On Monday, three of our students went over and talked about how to care for our beloved Guinea Pigs.

The kids have been packing the Guinea Pigs around with them during open classroom, almost as babies. I knew they were going to miss them so much, so I set up a nursery in our classroom. And I’m so glad I did. It has been the main focus of open classroom since.

We’ve had a new sibling born to one of our students and we’ve been having him and his mom visit as part of our empathy curriculum and also because we LOVE THEM. This was just an extension of all we’ve been working toward. So much love and care have been given to these babies in the last week.

After I set up the nursery and they began resetting it to their specifications, I asked if there was anything else they needed. Someone said; “Do you have any bottles?” I said; “No, but you could nurse them.” And she said; “We already have been.” Later in the day, I watched one of the mommies, lift her shirt, nurse on one side and then switch. So cute and accurate.

I also gave them a big stack of Mothering Magazine to peruse and get parenting tips. I love that our kids, ages five to eight still have the opportunity to role play with dolls, experimenting with being caregivers – loving, caring, feeding and reading.

And yes, while most of the students caring for the babies are the girls, some of the boys have been venturing over and I hope to see them growing more comfortable the longer the babies are in the classroom.