Case manager Bob Hurless recently took his Day Integrated Learning Center students through the hatching process after being trained in a ChickQuest workshop. “The students did a great job checking the incubator daily and we got to watch a few of them hatch. We have 25 rambunctious chicks and can already tell we have a rooster!”

Hurless works with students who are autistic or dealing with severe trauma. “I had the incubator in my room and the kids would come in to watch and document the temperature and humidity. All the kids were so thrilled to see these baby chickens—we put the chicks in a brooder box and watched with amazement.”

Hurless found that the chicks helped the students emotionally. “Some of my kiddos are very angry, but I would bring them into my room with the chicks and within a couple minutes they were sitting in a chair next to the chicks and were completely quiet and smiling. Students that I thought would never want to help or assist with cleaning and feeding the chicks volunteered and did a wonderful job.”

Hurless will be moving to another school next year. “I have designated an area to put in a chicken coop and have some of our chickens come with us. We will gather eggs and start the process all over again.”

“I am so thankful for this program and the benefits that it has given to my students who don’t have the same opportunities as others.”

We’ll be offering ChickQuest again soon—watch our events page for more info!