Powered by: 
Ranger Rick
Average Rating: 
Participant Age: 
7 to 12, Under 7
Approximate Cost: 
$0
Duration: 
1 to 60 minutes
Date submitted: 
01/16/2013
Difficulty: 
Physical Challenge: 
Follow a Snail Trail
Study a snail to learn more about these slimy, slow creatures.
Materials
  • Clear container
Steps
Step 1
Find a Snail

Just follow the trail: Silvery tracks of dried slime may lead you straight to a snail (or a slug).

No trails? Then look in their favorite hiding places: under rocks, logs, and damp leaves or on the plants in a garden.

Step 2
Have a Snail Race

Just how slow does a snail go? Draw a circle on the ground and put a snail in the middle. Use a watch to time how long it takes the snail to crawl out. Or set two snails side by side. Which one wins the race?

Step 3
Observe Your Snail's Movement

To see your snail in action, put it in a clear container and watch it move from underneath. Do you see the muscles in its foot rippling? Can you see its tiny mouth?

Step 4
Find "Sleeping" Snails

Has winter weather already arrived where you live? Not to worry! It's a perfect time to find 'sleeping' snails. If you look under leaves, rocks, or logs, you may find one tucked in for a long nap. Shhh! Don't wake it up. But do check for a special 'door' over its shell opening. That's dried mucus the snail makes to keep out winter's cold, dry air. In a few months, look for your friend again to tell it "happy spring!"

Be sure to return snails to their homes as soon as you've finished studying them!

Comments:
Login to Activity Finder
Gain access to more cool features!
Recommendations
If you liked this activity, why not try:
Build a simple trap to learn about small creatures in your yard.
A butterfly garden is a place butterflies love to flutter to. It takes just a few things to make...
Spend some time with homemade slime. It has some unusual properties!
Make a rainbow and learn how light is made up of different colors.
Dance around and pretend to be the gusty wind!
Browse Topics:
  • Access
  • Age
  • Animals
  • Cost
  • Duration
  • Kids Subject
  • Location
  • Season
  • Subject
  • Type
  • UserActivityStatuses
  • Difficulties
  • Physical Challenges