Senior Kindergarteners Hatch & Hold Chickens

By Laura Pupillo, Lower School Science Teacher

Our Beasley Senior Kindergarten scientists have become mother hens this year. Building off of their recent bird study, we decided to hatch out our own chicken eggs. Nearly one month ago, we placed seven chicken eggs of various colors and sizes into our incubator and began our learning journey!

We learned that an incubator is a warm, moist place that turns eggs throughout the day – much like a mother hen would do for her own egg clutch. We took observations and got to see how our eggs were developing in each stage. On day seven, we learned that it was time to candle the eggs. A process involving shining a bright light into the egg and looking for development. To our excitement, four out of the original seven eggs were fertilized and getting closer to hatch day! Additional eggs were added to replace eggs that were not fertile and the anticipated wait continued. As we neared hatch day, we explored the egg tooth, a specialized structure that a new chick uses to break free of the shell. We also explored their soon-to-be habitat – the brooder. A brooder is a warm, cozy place with nesting material, food, and water. Everything was looking good!

Finally the day we all had been eagerly waiting for arrived – hatch day! On day 21 exactly, just like we expected, our sweet little chicks made their first egg pecks and began their entry. That very afternoon one of the SK groups was lucky to see our first little chick fully hatch out of the shell and say hello. Be sure to check out our recording of that very special moment. By the end of the day, all four of our original eggs had successfully hatched.

Over the past two weeks, we have eagerly watched the chicks grow and have had the opportunity to name them and play. We also got to see two more sweet baby chicks hatch out a week later, making six feathered friends altogether. Although we can always watch videos and read books about baby birds, sometimes we just need to experience it. Seeing these babies be born and taking on the responsibility of caring for our friends has been rewarding. Students have shared that they are, “Hooked!” while others have shared that this was the “best experience of their lives.” Although those might be bold statements, I feel confident that this experience has created a greater love for animals and possibly a few future farmers.