Students’ visit in Critterville

David Rosen/Wildside Photography

Critterville is frequently the highlight of a student’s time inside the Center. Here, the students get “up close and personal” with live animals that are commonly found in and around the vernal pools at Mather.

The animals in Critterville include three native species of snakes, some frogs and toads, a Western Pond Turtle, several salamanders, a Western Fence Lizard, and a rabbit. For more about our animal residents, please check out Welcome to Critterville.

The students spend time visiting each of the animals and then the group gathers for a few minutes of discussion. Several students get the chance to share their knowledge about the critter they studied with the rest of the group. This gives them the opportunity to become the “teacher” and reinforces their understanding of the concepts they learned in the classroom.

After visiting all three learning stations during the indoor portion of their field trip, the students are encouraged to share their knowledge with others to help protect water quality, endangered habitats (such as vernal pools), and the unique animals that depend upon them.