Teaching egg incubation to children in the classroom or at home can be a very fun and rewarding opportunity and experience. On the other hand, if you are unprepared and not knowledgeable it can be a terrible let down and disappointment.
In order to teach children about incubation you will need to have the right supplies to successfully incubate the eggs and take care of them afterward. In order to have a successful hatch and teaching experience we recommend having the following incubation supplies:
- Egg Incubator with Circulated Air Fan (The fan costs more, but it really helps have a successful hatch. Make sure your fan is made for incubators, if you get a computer fan or something like that it might be way too much air and dry out the eggs)
- Accurate Thermometer/Hygrometer
- Egg Candler (This is the most important item when it comes to teaching about incubation, you will actually be able to see the development taking place)
Egg Turner (Optional, we recommend that when teaching children you let them turn the eggs by hand to give them the experience)
Young Girl helping her father candle eggs. (Photo: David McGrath)
You must recognize that by incubating eggs you are bringing a life into this world. This makes you responsible for taking care of it. There are several ways of taking care of newly hatched birds. One way is simply to arrange with someone else who is familiar with caring for birds to take them from you after they hatch, such as a farmer or breeder. We recommend this method if you don't have the space or desire to take care of the birds after they hatch. You should not send home live birds with children that are not properly prepared and equipped to take care of them. If you are ready to take on the challenge of caring for the birds, below is a list of recommended supplies:
- Brooder - A warm and safe place for the birds to grow and develop
- Feeders and Waterers
- Feed (Due to the weight of feed, we recommend finding a local feed store to purchase feed)
We have a wealth of information available in our Learning Center about the incubation process, this should give you all the information you need to teach young children about incubating eggs.