More about our Classroom Adopt-a-Nest Program

Hello friends and supporters!

I hope this post finds you well. I wanted to follow up to share a Q & A with my favorite teacher, Kimberley Khouzam, who recently had an adopted nest for her 3rd grade classroom.

Currently, we are still in nesting season, which goes (more or less) through March, so new adoptions are available. These nests will hatch over 45 days, so likely we will have hatchlings till around mid-May. Our plan is to collect some nests with photos to have in our “Available for Adoption” bank for the off season as well. Then we should be back to patrolling in July collecting new nests. During the off-season you can adopt an existing nest or make a reservation for next season. We are flexible with timing, depending on your schedule so just ask!

So, now on to our Q & A with Mrs. Khouzam.

How did you become interested in Sea Turtles?

I had always been a fan of sea turtles. In 2016, I visited The Turtle Hospital in Marathon, FL while we were on vacation.  I ended up bringing back books, souvenirs, and tons of pictures that I shared with my class.   I was hooked!   

Have you talked about sea turtles in the classroom in the past?

Ever since my visit to The Turtle Hospital in 2016, I have read books on sea turtles during our units on Informational Writing and Reading. 

How did you use the Adopted nest in the classroom?

All of my students love to read about animals.  I figured the Adopted nest program would give the children a personal connection to the Sea Turtles and spark interest.  As soon as I mentioned the program and that it was a possibility, they kept asking about it.  When I told them we had a nest and pictures/videos of our Adopted Turtle they were just as obsessed as I was.  We viewed the pictures/videos as a whole group and I also posted them on our class webpage so the students could share with their parents. 

What activities did you do, what learning skills did you cover?

During our Morning Meetings we focused on sea turtle facts when we first began the project.  We also read non-fiction sea turtle books to become experts for our non-fiction writing. The class also discussed different aspects of the environment and how pollution of all kinds and land development is doing harm to the sea turtle population.

How many hours of classroom time?

I have spent a lot of classroom time on this project.  We have incorporated Sea Turtle information into some of our morning meetings, read aloud time, research to become “experts” on a subject, and then informational writing.  We spent 4+hours viewing/discussing the pictures and videos including our Zoom meeting with Patty.  You can spend as much or as little time as you like on this, depending on your class needs/schedule. It just happened to fit in timing-wise with our informational writing unit. 

How many of homework?

I did not give any homework but many of the children read additional books and brought in pictures/artifacts about their own experiences with sea turtles.

What was your favorite part?

My favorite part of this project was seeing the children so excited about learning. They are genuinely concerned about the future of sea turtles and are motivated to change some of their habits, like using plastic straws. They want to improve the environment make things better for the sea turtles.   (I also loved getting to spend time Patty!!)

What did your students like best?

The students LOVED seeing the pictures and the videos of our adopted turtle and the babies after they hatched.  They also adored the video segment at the end of the Campamento Tortuguero Ayotlcalli with the baby sea turtle releases.   

Do you have any other thoughts to share?

I was so impressed at how organized and efficient everything was!  We got our letters and pictures about the adoption and hatch within hours.  I see this as a new yearly tradition.

This makes us so happy to hear, and we very much look forward to working with next year’s third grade class!

Thank you Kim for making this such a fun project!

If you have questions, please email us at info@ayotlcalli.org

To adopt a nest, click here

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    Online donations to Campamento Tortuguero Ayotlcalli A.C. are processed through Warriors of the Rainbow, a US-based 501c3 non-profit organization (EIN 83-4698795) established solely to support Campamento Tortuguero Ayotlcalli A.C. All donations are tax deductible and 100% of donations go directly to support the operations of Campamento Tortuguero Ayotlcalli A.C. Email admin@warriors4turtles.org for additional details.