Tadpoles. Gross.

I think for the most part, as a teacher, I can hold it together when something freaks me out.  For instance, fish creep me out.  I don’t like them one bit.  There is a fish tank in my room, with three fish living in it.  Someone always helps me with cleaning it because I am scared to death to stick my hand in the tank.  Well, about 3 months ago, my friend at work brought in a small tank that you can raise tadpoles in.  The kids saw it, and so of course, I have to show them the life cycle of the frog with REAL tadpoles. 

The tadpoles are here today.  They are the biggest, most creepy things I have ever seen.  I feel like they are dinosaur tadpoles. I was picturing them to be super small, black ones that would quickly turn into frogs over night, and I wouldn’t have to see the process.  Nope.  Here they are…


Of course, the tank my friend gave me is too small for these MASSIVE things.  Now I am trying to find a large tank to grow these suckers in.  If you have any advice on having a real life cycle of the frog happen IN your classroom, please send it my way.  I can’t even walk in a 5 feet radius of these things.  I am worried that when I come in tomorrow, they will be sitting at the desks waiting for our morning routine…

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12 responses to “Tadpoles. Gross.”

  1. Heidi Avatar

    I feel exactly the same way you do about the fish, tadpoles, etc. I covered for the fifth grade teacher a couple days last week during science and they were dealing with snails and little teeny fish as part of their ecosystem unit. Many of the fish kept dieing and man did they stink. I couldn't wait to get out of there. I felt like I was constantly washing my hands anytime I came near them. Eeek.

    My (Not So) Elementary Life

  2. Unknown Avatar

    Oh you poor thing! I can totally relate! I had a similar situation happen to me once when I was pregnant. I actually had to have the mom who "donated" the tadpoles take them back home. She sent them to school in this huge fish bowl that I was expected to hand wash. That meant TOUCHING the tadpoles. No way. I was so sick the only time I tried it. We did have a teacher however who had them in a smaller aquarium that was half way filled up with water. This seemed to work for her. I think she used some sort of brush to clean the sides of the tank. That's the only "help" or idea that I have…sorry! Hopefully they turn into frogs soon so that you can release them! Good luck!

    The Daily Cupcake…A Kindergarten Blog

  3. Anonymous Avatar

    I did that in school when I was younger! definitely didn't like it….

  4. Jen's Kinder Kids Avatar
    Jen's Kinder Kids

    Love your blog! I am your newest follower!
    Jen's Kinder Kids
    Please stop by & visit! 🙂

  5. Unknown Avatar

    Those seem huge to me…lol
    First Grade Blue SKies

  6. Jessica Ann Stanford Avatar
    Jessica Ann Stanford

    EEEEEEEEK! I totally couldn't do it either! Just the picture is enough for me lol


    Jessica Stanford
    Mrs. Stanford's Class Blog
    My TpT Store

  7. Elisabeth Avatar

    I have 2 in my classroom as well! Our 1st grade team all got some from a company towards the beginning of the year and they all died off. So a parent went fishing in the pond behind our school and got HUGE tadpoles. I'm pretty sure they're going to be bull frogs which means they will be massive. Mine are in an itty bitty tank and they're actually growing really well so I'm going to have to send them into another room with bigger tanks. One teacher dumped out her huge math tub with all of the materials and filled it with pond water. How are you feeding them? We put rocks covered with algae in the tanks and it's lasted 2 weeks so far. Good luck…they are pretty creepy but hopefully they'll start to grow on you. : )

    Tales of An Elementary Teacher

  8. Sandy Avatar

    Oh yikes!!! I had tadpoles last year. And they did not make it to the frog stage in their life cycle. I think I killed them :-/ I don't know how. We just came in one morning and they were belly up. I had to have someone come take them out because I was too grossed out by it!!! We just got a hermit crab, and even that is grossing me out! Good luck, and keep us updated!!! 🙂

  9. Sarah Avatar

    Those do look giant! I am easily creeped out too.

  10. HeidiSongs Avatar

    I have those same tadpoles in my room! They are definitely bullfrog tadpoles, and they don't creep me out one bit, thankfully! When I clean the tank, I just reach in and grab them one by one with my hands and put them in a dish of water, LOL!
    I bought "Frog and Tadpole Bites" at a local fish and pet store to feed them, and I also bought some water plants to make sure that they have something to eat on the weekends too when I can't be there to feed them.
    It takes two YEARS for bullfrog tadpoles to turn into frogs, but once they start sprouting their little legs, it can take just about a month or two.
    I have mine in a regular fish aquarium with a filter so that the water doesn't need to be changed very often, and that helps a lot. When they start getting longer legs, like about a half an inch, put a rock in the aquarium that sticks out of the water a bit so that they can crawl out to breathe if necessary. That way, if their regular lungs start to develop, they won't drown. If your aquarium isn't covered fully on top, you'll need a net of some sort taped onto the top of it to keep the little froggy in if he should grow up and decide to hop away! Last year, I was gone at a conference for a week, and while I was gone one tadpole finished turning into a frog. He climbed up on the rock and hopped out, presumably overnight. We never saw him again!!! The kids were really sad about it, but it was kind of comical in a way. I guess I have a sort of twisted sense of humor! Anyway, we still had three more left. I taped a net over the top of the tank and untapped it each day to feed them.
    You'll have to either give the frog away to somebody that wants him when the project is finished, or you'll have to keep him, unless there are bullfrogs living in the natural environment around your home. We have a pond nearby with bullfrogs, so I just let mine go. 🙂
    Feel free to email me with any questions. Here's a link to my blog post on our frogs, too.


    Heidi Butkus
    [email protected]

  11. Tanja Fussell Avatar
    Tanja Fussell

    More likely, they will not survive! I had no luck with tadpoles and gave up on trying to have living things in the classroom. 🙁 Good luck with yours!! I know the kids must LOVE them!

  12. Naomi Rose Mintzer Avatar
    Naomi Rose Mintzer

    so funny. 🙂 You should have Jason give you tadpole tips! Or be a guest speaker or something. He's the pro with those slimy suckers!