CATTARAUGUS CO., N.Y. — Many students across the county have benefitted from this year’s Incubation & Embryology program. Throughout the first three weeks of May I have been meeting with classrooms to talk about the incubation process and what is happening inside the egg as the chick develops.
Normally, this would be done in-person and the students would get hands-on experience with candling the eggs and witnessing the chick’s hatch.
However, with the current circumstances surrounding Covid-19 it was best to be done virtually. 54 different classrooms from 6 school districts with students in grades Pre-K to 5th participated this year.
The first two weeks we talked about the early development and I was able to candle the eggs in a way that the students could see through a Zoom or Microsoft TEAMS meeting. As we got further in the development, we began talking about the breeds of chicks that would be hatching out along with their physical characteristics and personality traits.
The most exciting part for students is being able to watch a chick hatch. Luckily, I was able to get a video of the chicks hatching and time lapse it so they could get an idea of the process and still have that experience.
All-in-all it was a rewarding experience with the students, and I am looking forward to being back in the classroom next year! The chicks that hatched headed to their forever homes with some of our 4-H families in the poultry program so that they can raise them and show them at the county fair.
–Abby Luzier, 4-H Youth Development Educator
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