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Pets Theme Unit
Life with a Snake



Life with a Snake
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 4 to 6
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   5.78

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    constrictor, herpetologists, non-poisonous, prank, reptile-lover, temperament, ventilation, curiosity, commitment, species, venomous, captivity, elastic, expression, artists, aquarium
     content words:    New Zealand, Saint Patrick, In Michigan


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Life with a Snake
By Colleen Messina
  

1     All people have their favorite expression that they use when life throws them curve balls. Your grandmother might say "For heaven's sakes." But a reptile-lover might say "for goodness snakes!" People who love snakes might be a little different, but believe it or not, a snake can be a fascinating pet.
 
2     In the wild, snakes live in many different habitats, and they have been around for millions of years. These cold-blooded reptiles can live on land, in trees, underground, and in both salt and fresh water. They live on every continent except Antarctica. Some places do not have any snakes at all, like Hawaii, Iceland, and New Zealand. Legends say that Saint Patrick removed all of the snakes from Ireland, too. Even though some snakes are rare, many can be kept as pets.
 
3     Snakes make good pets for people who don't like to cuddle a fluffy creature and who have lots of curiosity. Snakes don't take up much space. They are unusual because they don't have ear openings, and they don't have eyelids. Their skin is elastic so it can stretch when they catch large prey. They don't need a lot of attention. They come in beautiful colors, and they are fascinating to watch. Many snakes make interesting pets, so it is good to check out different breeds before you decide what kind of snake you would like.

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