Me: The really tall plants in this field are sugar cane plants. This is where we get sugar from.
Students: *ohhs and awws*
Me: But you see, we have a really tall fence around the field. Because there are animals that live here that like the sweet taste, too. Can anyone think of animal that we have here that can jump really well?
Student: A kangaroo!
Me: Kangaroo’s can jump really high, but we don’t have those in America.
Me: Think about animals that live here, in Texas. Anyone else?
Student 2: A kangaroo!
Me: Nope! They still don’t live here.
Student 3: A cheetah?
Me: Cheetah’s live in Africa. This. Is. America. What jumping animals live here?
Student 4: A frog?
Me: It starts with a D…
Students: A moose! It’s a moose!
Me: Deer. We have deer here.
Student: Miss, will this fish bite me if I touch it?
Me: No, that fish won’t bite you. It doesn’t even have teeth.
*5 minutes later, new fish*
Student: Miss! Can I touch this fish or will it bite me?
Me: Yes, you can touch the fish. No, it will not bite you.
*Another few minutes. Still the same student*
Student: Miss, if I touch this fish will it bite me?
Me: Kiddo, none of these fish are going to bite you! You’re fine!
Student: Are you sure? What about this other one? Will it bite me?
Me *sarcastic tone*: Yes. That one that’s an inch long and half the size of your pinky will bite you.
This actually came from a parent, not a student.
Parent: Why do you have poison ivy here?
Me: Poison ivy?
Parent: Yeah, my son is really allergic. Why would you have it here?
Me: Well, this is a nature center and it’s a native plant. We don’t “have” it. It just grows here naturally.
Parent: Wouldn’t you want to get rid of it?
Me: It’s impossible to get rid of all the poison ivy in the entire center. We clear the trails of it but it will always grow back.
Parent: That doesn’t sound good.
Me: Well, it’s nature, so… That’s just the way it works.
Me: Hey, buddy! That’s some nice hair you have today. I like all the spikes.
Student: Thank you!
Me: Your mom had spiky hair today, too. Did she do yours?
Me: Oh, well you must have done it yourself then, huh?
Me: Who did it then, buddy?
Student (dead serious): A spider monkey.
Student 1: Have I told you about my pet? I have a fish. It’s a Chinese fighting fish.
Student 2: I don’t have a fish. But did you know you can adopt baby sharks? That’s what I’m going to do. It will be the best pet ever.
3-4 year olds
Student 1: Woah! Look at that pond!
Student 2: I know! It’s green! Green is my favorite!
Student 1: Are there sharks in there?
Me: No, buddy. Don’t worry there’s no sharks in there.
Student 1: Are you sure?
Me: Yeah, it’s a pond. Sharks live in the ocean.
Student 2: Well there could be. If there was a stream that went into the pond and that went into a river and that went into the ocean, then there could be sharks here.
Me: Well, you’re not wrong.
Student (4 yo): Miss, can you open this for me?
Me:*holds out hand*
Me: *looks down to see a whole, unpeeled orange*
Context: Distinguishing between different environments found on the island.
Me: So can anyone tell me the difference between the marsh or bay side and the seawall side of the island?
Student: *dripping with sass* Ugh, duh! The wall.
Me: *Internal face palm*