How to Properly Care for Goldfish in the Classroom
- 1). Choose the right tank. The Aquarium Guys website recommends using an equation to choose the right size. Multiply the length of the tank by its depth, then divide by 30. The number you're left with tells you how many "inches" of fish can live in the tank. For instance, for a 6-by-10-inch tank, you would multiply six by 10 to get 60. Divide that by 30 to get two. This tank could hold one 2-inch goldfish or two 1-inch goldfish.
- 2). Place the tank away from direct sunlight and away from heavy-traffic areas. The tank is likely to be jostled if it's next to the door or the area where children wash their hands. Place it on a counter top or stable piece of furniture. The tank should be low enough that children can see the fish but high enough that they can't reach the top of the tank.
- 3). Change the water once a week. You don't need to completely empty the tank. Replacing 25 percent of the tank's water is sufficient. Before you put the new water in, leave it out in a container for 24 hours so the water will reach room temperature and the chlorine will evaporate.
- 4). Feed the fish once a day. If you're letting the children do the feeding, demonstrate how to pour in the food slowly so they won't dump too much in at once. Explain that fish should only eat once a day and can only eat special food so children won't be tempted to try to feed them lunch leftovers. Store the food container on a high shelf so students can't get to it.
- 5). Make a plan for caring for the fish during weekends and school holidays. You can take the fish home with you if you have a tank at home or ask class parents if they would like to take care of the fish during breaks. If you're leaving the fish in the classroom, you may want to buy an automatic feeder or a time release food block to keep the fish on a healthy food schedule. Over long school breaks, stop in once a week to change the water.