Murrieta, California, United States
Posted Oct 02, 2013
Always saying "No" or "don't touch that" stifles children's creativity. Instead, I taught my children to look up the various critters we found on the internet. With wild creatures we had a "catch and release" plan at my house, but the release part might come after a few days, weeks, or even months. We learned about many critters this way, but some of our first "catch and release pets" were snails. My youngest two children were 3 and 4 and would build elaborate playgrounds in our bird fountain for our snail friends. I know it seems gross, but kids are washable. Now, 10 years later, these kids are are naturally curious, google the things they want to know about, and are not afraid of bugs and spiders. Snails are actually cute, if you forget about the slime... (Except for in the garden!) Super low cost (as in free), easy to maintain, safe and easy to handle... and they never bite! Just wash hands afterward.