Saturday, January 16, 2010

Homeschooling is not for Cowards

This week we dissected an owl pellet. I don’t advise this before lunch. Heavens no. It would have been much better first thing in the morning or late in the day. Regardless, it was one fascinating project once the initial shock of dividing the bones from the fur wore off. The girls loved it and were able to identify the bones of a mole and mouse as the delicate fare the owl had before the big event.

Gone are the days we sat and cuddled on the couch simply studying and talking about owls and reading one of my favorite winter books Owl Moon, by Jane Yolen.

The girls want more hands on activities. So we created our own curriculum for science this year as we all feel that we want to experience and fulfill certain final urges before we step into the highschool lab scene in our household once again. I chose the topical units to be covered and the girls determined all the projects and experiments. Here, without further ado, is a glimpse of the dissection.

Regardless of all this, I still have my well-loved copy of Owl Moon and have read those comforting and familiar words again, if even to myself:

....When you go owling
you don’t need words
or warm
or anything but hope.
That’s what Pa says.
The kind of hope
that flies
on silent wings
under a shining
Owl Moon.


naturalmom said...

Owl pellets are so cool! I don't know if you saw this post on my blog -- -- but it has a funny picture of Alexander's face as he tries to tease out the tiny bones of a shrew from his owl pellet. We just found an undissected pellet today while cleaning Brianna's room, so perhaps another dissection is in our near future! (Do only homeschooled kids find undissected owl pellets in their rooms? :o))


Ganeida said... No, we don't do this. I will do many things, including keep live animals others loathe but I will not dissect dead things.No, not even pellets.

Renee said...

I must say that this one gave me pause. It is amazing what you are doing with your children ~ What a great teacher you are! It is not on my list of things I want to do before I leave this earth..but maybe I should consider it :)

Jan Lyn said...

I'm giggling here ladies. I love Renee's comment: "I must say this one gave me a pause." Us homeschoolers do A LOT of odd things I think. Definately a curious lot. My daughters have already asked to do this again some time Stephanie. How fun a photo and do let us know how your second attempt goes.
Highschool biology was wonderful to teach to my son, but he was squeamish with the dissections, Ganeida. So I totally understand!:) My daughters need a full sequence of lab sciences for their preparation, so we have a long ways to go.