Pine Grove Elementary School kindergartener Chloe David, 6, put a plastic snake in a box and added the things that she thought might be in a real snake's environment.
"Bugs, leaves and water, and that's it," she said.
Hers was one of many such projects at the Kindergarten Stuffed Pet Show, held Friday. Children were invited to choose a favorite stuffed toy and create a habitat for it, said Laura Santiago, one of two kindergarten co-team leaders.
This event has been going on for at least six years, she said, so children can "learn about animal habitats and the needs of an animal," and work on a project with their parents and be creative.
The project also helps prepare them for future exhibits. "This sets them up for the science fair," Santiago said.
It also ties in with language arts, social studies and writing. "They came up with stories, so it helps with oral language development and building vocabulary." These writing skills, Santiago said, were "the major aspect of the project."
Parents, relatives and friends were invited to the school to see the habitats, which included the snake's forest, a shark's ocean, a horse's corral and a hamster's cage, complete with Play-Doh food and a water bottle.
Tina Baxter, parent of kindergartener Robert Ross, was one of the visitors.
"I thought it was great," she said, "because they had a great time doing this with their parents. It's like a science fair project. I think they take pride in what they do. It reminds me of doing projects when I was a kid."
The kindergarten teachers are Santiago, co-team leader Carmela Duncan, and Margaret Matera, Melynda Rydbom, Amy Hans, Elnora Hill, Debbie Byrd, Amber Monsod, Dana Proeger and Keri Hackney.