Nature Study: Copperhead Snakes


Isn’t it great when a study of nature just lands right in your lap? On Wednesday R12 and the younger boys were out behind the house in the woods exploring the various trails and getting to know our yard some more. I was upstairs folding laundry- have I mentioned the washer and dryer is in the hallway outside the bedrooms? Yeah…it’s pretty cool.

Anyway, as I was folding R12 came running up the stairs to tell me she’d seen a snake. I asked what kind and she didn’t know so I asked her what color it was. I was expecting to hear “black”, but instead she answered, “tan with diamonds”. I put down the laundry and we went immediately to the laptop for a little snake identification. Because where I come from, “tan with diamonds” is not really a snake to mess with. Whatsoever. 

I showed her pictures of the Copperhead and of the Timber Rattler and thankfully she decided it wasn’t either of those. She settled on a garter snake- I guess the diamond pattern was small not big.

Photo of the Copperhead from Public-Domain-Image

However, we did have a look at lots of Copperhead facts because they are found around here and we do have a wood pile. We enjoyed which had all sorts of facts about copperheads. For example, did you know that copperheads give birth to live young?

We have not taken the time to do a drawing yet, but I think we will. Living among boxes does not lend well to activities like drawing, but I happen to know where our nature box is and I think we can find the chalk pastels. There were some things I kept out and didn’t pack. These items are among the chosen few!

Every time the kids run out to the woods I tell them to come back and tell me something new they saw. This time it provided a great lesson on snakes and snake safety!

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  1. I really don't like snakes at all but I have dealt with them on the trail numerous times…usually by screaming and giving a lot of space to the snake. :)I love these sorts of teaching moments. You do such a great job with it in your family.

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