Desk Pets (15 Creative Ideas to Try This Year)

desk pets adoption center

Desk Pets (15 Creative Ideas to Try This Year)

Have you seen the new desk pet idea that is all over Tik-Tok? In this post I’ll explain to you what desk pets are and then I’ll show you some fun ideas to introduce them in your classroom this year and where to get them. You may just have more fun than the kids with this one!

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What Are Desk Pets?

So, desk pets are basically a clever name for little animal erasers that you give your students for their desk. They were introduced to the world from teacher, Marissa Begay on Tik-Tok and since then everyone fell in love with them. They can be used for an incentive, a classroom management technique or just for fun.

I’ll show you how some teachers are using their desk pets in this post to give you some great ideas to try it out in your class. At the end of this post, I’ll show you where you can get some for your class.

How to Use Desk Pets in the Classroom

IMAGE SOURCE | EMILYBUDZ

First step is get a ton of cute little animal erasers. A lot of teachers scored these at Target in the dollar section. But, they may be out now.

They have them on Amazon too, my favorites are at the end of the post. You can also choose to get a desk pet home, I’ll show you some different options for that too.

Displaying Your Desk Pets

As an extra motivation for your students why not really put those desk pets on display.  I'm talking about a fun container that will get them excited about earning this incentive.  Check out some ideas below.

A Pretty Desk Pet Container

IMAGE SOURCE | MS_FOURTH

I love the idea of displaying your desk pets in a pretty container like Janelle, a fourth-grade teacher from Oregon. Then the label just takes it over the top. How excited would your kids be to see this display in the class? Here’s a similar plastic apothecary jar that they would look great in.

Repurposed Cookie Container for Desk Pets

desk pet containers

IMAGE SOURCE | HELLO_FIFTH

It’s all in the presentation, right?  Would your students love to see all the desk pets they can earn displayed in this cute cookie container?  That might just up the motivation factor.

Jill, a 5th grade teacher from L.A. repurposed a cookie container from Target, added some cute googly eyes and created this fun container to hold the colorful erasers.

Have a Home for Each Pet

IMAGE SOURCE | THEPRICEOFTEACHING

Brianna, a second-grade teacher has both the large erasers and the mini ones too. She lets her students earn a desk pet with a cute little home and then they can also earn as many as the mini ones as they want.

Labeled Containers for the Pets

IMAGE SOURCE | EMILYBUDZ

Another idea is to get these small plastic containers and then label them with the student’s name. It’s the perfect size to sit on their desk.

Desk Pets as a Behavior System

IMAGE SOURCE | EMILYBUDZ

Desk pets can be used as a behavior system. Here’s what Emily, a Kindergarten teacher does. She sends this note home with the students and each student gets a desk pet and a plastic container for their pet.

When students follow rules in the class they earn points that they can use in the “Pet Shop.” The Pet shop has food for their pet, balls, accessories and more pets! If the student is not following the rules then she will have to babysit the pet for the day on her desk.

Desk Pet Adoption Center

desk pets adoption center

IMAGE SOURCE | CASTROKINDERCORNER

I love the idea of creating an adoption center to get your students excited about earning their desk pets.  Mrs. Castro, a kindergarten teacher, created a ticket system.  When the students earn five tickets, they can purchase a desk pet.

The students are learning by practicing counting tickets and comparing with their friends to see how many they have!

Adoption Certificate

desk pets adoption certificate

IMAGE SOURCE | CASTROKINDERCORNER

Mrs. Castro’s students next get to fill out an adoption certificate.  This includes their name, the pets name, the type of pet and the date of adoption.  Then they can place them in their pet home.

Limit Play Time

Most teachers agree that it is a good idea to have limits on when the students can play with their pets.  In Mrs. Castor’s classroom the pets can only come out to play on Fun Fridays.  At the end of the day the pets will go back to their homes and watch the class throughout the week.

Desk Pet Vet Clinic

desk pets vet clinic

IMAGE SOURCE | MISSLOWERSFLOWERS

Here's a brilliant idea from Miss Lower, a fourth-grade teacher.  If kids are misbehaving or if they have a messy desk the desk pets will have to go to the vet clinic for a short visit.  When the students are ready the desk pets can be returned.

Have Students Create a Desk Pet Habitat

desk pets habitat

IMAGE SOURCE | EMILYLBUDZ

As a fun extra project Emily encouraged her students to create a habitat for their pets with construction paper, Q-tips, cotton balls, popsicle sticks or anything else that they have around the house.

Desk Pet Habitat Science Project

desk pets habitat

IMAGE SOURCE | EMILYLBUDZ

Not only can creating a habitat be a fun activity you can also make it a learning activity. A science unit on habitats could involve students creating a habitat for their pet.

Food for the Desk Pets

FOOD ERASERS | FIND THEM HERE

As an extra incentive you can have your children earn food for their pet with a reward system. Wouldn’t they have fun with this?

Desk Pet Shop

desk pets pet shop

IMAGE SOURCE | CASTROKINDERCORNER

Creating a pet shop is another way to reinforce positive behavior in the class.  You can find tiny erasers that are food, toys, treats and even decorations for their home!

Mrs. Castro’s students can purchase anything from the pet shop with 2 tickets that they have earned for good behavior.  Read on to discover where to get items for your pet shop.

Using Coins in Your Desk Pet Shop

desk pet shop

IMAGE SOURCE | SASSYN2ND

Here’s another super fun way to run your class desk pet shop.  Ms. Luis, a second-grade teacher, has coins that the students can earn for positive behaviors that they can spend to adopt a pet.  She also discusses the rules and responsibilities of adopting a pet with the class. (So important!)

If you love the coins, she uses you can find similar ones on Amazon.  Here are some realistic ones if you want to incorporate learning to count money and here are some generic ones.

desk pet homes

IMAGE SOURCE | SASSYN2ND

I’m also loving the little containers that Ms. Luis has for her desk pets.  You can find similar little desk pet containers here.

Desk Pets Creative Writing Activity

By now you know that desk pets work well as a positive reinforcement strategy.  But there are a few more creative ways that teachers are using desk pets in the classroom as well.

You can create a writing activity around desk pets. Have students write about the day in the life of their desk pet or a story of what their desk pet did before they became their pet.  Students will enjoy writing about something that they love!

Where to Find Desk Pets

If I’ve convinced you to jump on this bandwagon then below check out the best desk pet packs for your classroom that you can get on Amazon.

32 PACK OF DESK PETS | FIND THEM HERE

62 PACK OF DESK PETS | FIND THEM HERE

If that last set just wasn’t quite enough for you, this one includes 62 animals.

DEKS PET & FOOD COMBO | FIND IT HERE

This one is fun because you can get a combo of animals and food. There are 100 pieces in this pack.

Desk Pet Accessories

If you want to create a pet shop with extra items that your students can purchase, then check out below links to my favorite desk pet accessories.

desk pet accessories

DESK PET ACCESSORIES | FIND THEM HERE

This is a fun combo pack of 100 erasers, and it includes animals, food, toys and even musical instruments!

desk pets accessories

DESK PET ACCESSORIES | FIND THEM HERE

This pack has 60 pieces and I love that it includes home items like pans, cups, toothbrushes.  Plus, it also includes sports equipment!

Desk Pet Homes

Below check out some options to contain the animals. They come in different sizes so be sure to check the measurements.

DESK PET HOMES | WHERE TO FIND

ONE | 24 PACK CLEAR CONTAINERS

TWO | 12 CLEAR PLASTIC CONTAINERS

THREE | 12 COLORFUL CONTAINERS WITH LIDS

FOUR | PLASTIC APOTHECARY JAR WITH LID

I hope you like this fun idea of adding desk pets to your classroom this year. I really think it’ll make a memorable experience for your students. If you like this post click on the social icons below to share it on your favorite social or click on your favorite picture to save it to your Pinterest boards!

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