Big lessons taught from a small incubator


September 14, 2017

Dakota Kuhns/Western Nebraska Observer

Mrs. Amy McManigal's 6th grade students begin each year learning about life cycles, birth rates, death rates, populations and ecosystems.

These large lessons capture the students' attention because they are taught in an small incubator.

On Sunday, Sept. 3, two dozen chicken eggs went into McManigal's incubator and students anxiously wait for them to begin hatching, generally in 21 days. Their baby chicks are expected around Sept. 24, but students will keep a close eye on them for days after hatching.

"We always keep the chicks in a heated brooder in the classroom for about a week to make sure they are healthy, then they go their forever homes," McManigal said.

Dr. Karla Jenkins donated the eggs and will be taking all the chicks that hatch back to her farm west of town.

"Dr. Jenkins has been a world of help and support with the project for the last three years and continues to help every time I call," McManigal added.

Following the same lesson lines, the class will hatch ducklings in October, guineas in April and pheasants in May.

"The chicken and pheasant eggs are donated by local people and they are always willing to take the chicks back," McManigal said. "The school has allowed me to order the duck and guineas in. I always find homes for the babies before I order or hatch the eggs."

This year McManigal will be live streaming to her Youtube channel as hatching time nears. Anyone interested can watch at:


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