Our classroom pet, Dory, passed away this past week. She was a sweet, little fish that the children loved feeding, observing, and making pictures for to decorate the area around her bowl (so she wouldn’t feel bored, according to the kids). The loss provided us with the opportunity to have a talk about life cycles and process our feelings about saying goodbye to a pet. Many kids shared that they felt sad that Dory died; others expressed confusion and curiosity as to why it happened. We let each child who wanted share their thoughts and feelings and then we all said a farewell aloud to Dory as a group. Having a classroom pet provides the children with many opportunities: learning to care for animals, having compassion for smaller creatures, learning to use the skills of observation to study animals in their habitats, and, of course, experiencing the feeling of loss in a safe, supported and loving environment.