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a great bottom feeding fish that only reaches 2 inches is the corrry catfish they are schooling.(i have one and its my favorite fish)
i know your kid would love glass catfish. they are not bottom feeders but they still have the wiskers but the kids would love them cause you can see rite through them!
http://www.liveaquaria.com/product/prod_display.cfm?pcatid=2519&N=0
I think some neons and a some glass cats and some corry cats and maybe a pleco(bottom dweller) would be great.
another great fish your kid would love are guppies, get some males and female and they will mate in your tank and your kids would love to wathch the baby fish.
just remember to not to buy any large fish or fish that will become large(the kids will prolly want to get a big fish) and follow the rule of thum of about 1 inch of fish per gallon of water in the tank. although in my 5 gallon tank i have about 7 iches of fish but i do a lot of maintanes.
i found one of the best ways to ensure a healthey tank inviornment is to do weekly gravel vacs/water changes. My tank was always cloudy but when i started gravel vacing the water cleared.
browse that website i showed you for some ideas for your new tank.
In my tank i have anarchis plant it is a good looking plant but it will need to be trimmed from time to time.
 

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I was going to tell you to take a rubermaid bin fill it up with water,fish,gravel and hook up your filter, start cycling your filter and your gravel in it with some fish and then set is all up christmas morning but i just remembered your kids are yung so how would you explain santa leaving a pre seeded filter and gravel with the tank lol
Ya i would say you should take some filter media from you old tank and put it in the new filter and put some hardy fish in and wait two weeks.
 
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