Thursday, May 12, 2022

In short, I am busy: Chick Central

 Program Goals

    • Introduce kids to the life cycle of a chicken
    • Bring in non-library users
    • Partner with schools and community
    We didn't do this for two years during the pandemic and then again this year. It wasn't very successful this year - we've rearranged things and didn't have a good space, none of our eggs hatched, and we were just too busy to really promote or focus on it. I don't know if we'll repeat it in future - this might have been our last year.

    This program doesn't have a way to count attendance, but it does bring us a lot of great publicity. Generally, I provide the incubator, my school partners provide the eggs, and local people from the community provide expert assistance and the materials for caring for the chicks for a week or two after they hatch.

    We started this in 2012 and have been pretty diligent about repeating each year. Things we have learned:
    • Make sure you know where the chickens are going afterward. They grow really fast.
    • Everyone is a chicken expert. Just smile and nod.
    • They are stinky and need to be cleaned regularly. Make sure you have got somebody roped in for this job.
    • Some chicks will die. It's great if you have a person on staff who comes in before the library opens and removes any unfortunate casualties.
    • Staff and patrons are shocked when I say this, but I tell people all the time: This is science, not pets. Animals die. Not all of them are perfect. We take the best care of them we can, but I am not doing therapy for George the Duck's feet (assuming he needs it anyways)
    • Also, if you throw in a duckling or two kids will adore it but the mess factor will quadruple.
    The whole crew from 2015

    These are from the first hatching

    School partner, Pattie Woods

    Community partner, Virgil Wuttke (the eggspert)

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