Our fun, interactive lesson programs are offered free to classroom teachers in Newport County. Classes are designed to meet your learning goals and are offered at your location or at the Potter League’s state-of-the-art animal care and education center. A tour of the shelter is included with programs held at our facility.
In our third-grade series, children learn about proper pet care, the role of animal shelters, the problem of pet overpopulation, respect for wildlife, dog bite prevention, and more. The focus of these weekly classes is to teach students to think about and care for animals so that they develop kinder habits and will grow to be more humane and considerate adults.
Our seventh grade program is aimed at helping students develop their own humane ethic. Lessons include endangered species, coyotes on Aquidneck Island, pet overpopulation and the history of animal shelters, and how animals are used for entertainment and sport. Through these examples, students are taught to evaluate how animals are used in our society so that they can make decisions, such as where to spend their money, according to what they feel is right.
Our fun, interactive lessons focus on creating a more humane community, reducing the root causes of animal suffering and enhancing the human/animal bond. Lessons usually average 45 minutes in length, and 30 minutes for the PreK and K – Grade 2 age groups. Please note that the addition of a live animal may cause the program to run longer. Groups of 35 participants or fewer are preferred. Please try to make your reservation at least 2 weeks in advance of your desired date.
Lessons usually average 45 minutes in length or 30 minutes for the PreK and K – Grade 2 age groups. Please note that the addition of a live animal may cause the program to run longer. We prefer to work with groups of 35 participants or fewer.
Taking good care of a dog is a lot of work and a big responsibility. Children learn what people need to do to be responsible dog owners and have a happy, healthy dog. The importance of acting safely around a dog is also emphasized.
Topics covered: science, safety, character education
Having a small mammal as a pet can be just as rewarding as a cat or a dog. Children will learn some facts about guinea pigs, hamsters, rabbits, and more furry friends. What kind of care do these kinds of pets need? How can we safely handle them? How can we understand whether or not they are happy?
Topics covered: science, safety, character education
Our pets are different from wild animals. They can’t take care of themselves and need things from people to stay happy and healthy. Class can focus on responsible ownership of a dog, cat, or rabbit/small animal.
– science, safety, character education
Students learn about how animal shelters help pets and what shelters do for the public. Jobs at the shelter are discussed using an interactive activity, including how children can help animals by becoming junior volunteers.
– civics, science, character education
Students will understand the importance of keeping themselves and their pets safe. They will learn what to do if they see a loose, unknown dog in their yard or neighborhood. They are taught and will practice how to safely meet and pet a dog they don’t know.
– civics, safety, character education
Safety around cats and dogs is presented as a counterpart to manners towards people. Students will learn what manners are and why they are important. They will then investigate what pets are trying to tell us about their feelings based on their body language, and using that information, they will consider how to behave around dogs, cats, and people in a polite and thoughtful way.
– safety, science, social studies, character education
Students learn about what pets need to be happy and healthy, and how animal shelters work to give them those things and find them new homes. They will then get a chance to try their hand at being an adoption counselor, choosing the best home for a pet.
– language arts, science, civics, character education
Students are introduced to the joys of cat ownership and learn about cat behavior and purr-sonalities. Through adorable cat-themed poetry, they will investigate why cats are the way they are and how to be a good friend to them. Cat overpopulation and feline body language are also discussed.
– language arts, science, safety, character education
We’ve all heard of endangered species, but what about animals that have adapted well – perhaps too well – to human created environments, such as cities and towns? Students will learn what traits are key to a species success in urban and suburban environments. The overpopulation of coyotes throughout the United States will be highlighted as an example, with an emphasis on how residents’ activities affect coyote behavior and population.
– science, language arts, civics, safety, character education
Students investigate the basic ways in which all animals learn and examine case studies to see how dog trainers and behaviorists use these principles to create well-behaved pets. They then experiment with each other to develop an understanding of humane methods from the perspective of the other side of the leash.
– science, problem solving, safety, character education
Students investigate the concept of the web of life—the interdependence of all species—and will consider how their actions affect other living things and their habitats. Using the feral and abandoned cat problem as an example, students will consider the stakeholders and identify a compassionate solution.
– science, civics, character education, problem solving
What does animal welfare mean and how do our laws protect animals from harm? Students will learn one way to assess the welfare of animals in different environments and will see how RI animal cruelty laws are designed to protect them. They will then assess ways in which the laws are and are not successful and will learn how to respond should they suspect animal abuse.
– civics, language arts, science, ethics
Students will investigate how animals are used to advance science and create new medicines. They will then read, analyze, and discuss arguments for and against the use of animals for scientific research. The class concludes with an overview of safeguards that are currently in place to protect those animals and a discussion of the ethical issues involved.
– science, language arts, civics, ethics
Often students who profess a love of animals feel that their only career option is to become a veterinarian. In this class, students will learn about a variety of jobs that help animals, including educators, adoption counselors, dog trainers, animal care staff, and of course, veterinarians.
– science, civics, language arts
Is your class planning a donation drive or fundraiser for the Potter League? A presentation from a Potter League educator makes a great kick-off or conclusion to your community service! Our Service Project Presentation is available for any grade level and explains what the Potter League does and how your students’ donations will be used at the shelter. We love the opportunity to personally thank your students for their hard work!
Don’t see the lesson topic you’re looking for? Please contact us to discuss your ideas. We would be happy to create a FREE personalized program for your classroom!
“Now that the program is over… many kids feel the same as I do and I am pretty sure that a good handful of them will do something about [animal abuse] or inform others.”
– Michaela (Thompson Middle School)
We’ve got something for you, too! Join us for a lesson, tour, and activity at the shelter.