What Do Animals Teach Us About Being Human?

After our geography block I thought we would have our first science block of the year entitled The Human Being and the Animal World. This will be taught in 2 blocks and I know this will be the biggest hit of the year. What Miss Sky lacks in math skills she makes up for in science and she LOVES animals.

We follow a 3 day rhythm which you can read about here https://dkjsv05.wordpress.com/2009/08/07/main-lesson/ . So this means we focus on 1 story a week. If our block lasts 4 weeks that is 4 stories. For this block I am using the reference The Human Being and the Animal World by Roy Wilkinson. In the first block we will discuss the threefold human being ( Head, Trunk, and Limbs) in relation to the animal kingdom.

I have noticed that the majority of  schools use the cuttlefish for the example of our head due to Steiner’s “suggestion” but like Roy Wilkinson explains it “there is no reason why the teacher should not deal with other related animals if he so wishes.”  Since Miss Sky more than likely will never see a cuttlefish I thought it would be better for us to use the octopus as an example. http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/invertebrates/common-octopus.html  They have some at our local zoo where Miss Sky can observe them up close. It is important that we describe these animals imaginatively and not scientifically. So poetry is good to use in this block. http://torch.cs.dal.ca/~johnston/poetry/octopus.html

For the trunk I will be using the mouse and dolphin for examples. We will learn that man is the only limb animal and that is one thing that sets us apart in the animal kingdom.

Block 2 (which we will pick up later in the year) describes the animal world. Examples I will be using for this block will be the cow, horse,lion, dog, then a week on birds and fishes.

I already listed the resource by Wilkinson, which I highly recommend, but other resources I thrifted for this year include:

Handbook of Nature Study by   Anna Botsford Comstock

Dolphins and Sharks   Mary Pope Osborne

Horses   Laura Driscoll

Read a louds:

Black Beauty   Anna Sewell

One hundred and One Dalmatians   Dodie Smith

Charlotte’s Web

Stuart Little  E.B. White

Justin Morgan Had A Horse

Misty of Chincoteague

Sea Star

Misty’s Twilight

King of the Wind   Marguerite Henry

I also struck gold and found the Miss Bianca series at Goodwill  by Margery Sharp

The Incredible Journey   Sheila Burnford (might save this one for next years geography of North America)

Miss Sky’s readers:

Owls In The Family   Farley Mowat

Lions at Lunchtime   Mary Pope Osborne

Nine True Dolphin Stories   Margaret Davidson

Dolphin Adventure

Dolphin Treasure

Dolphin Freedom   Wayne Grover

Dolphin Diaries    Ben M. Baglio (found a few of these)

Ralph S. Mouse   Beverly Cleary

A Mouse Called Wolf   Dick King-Smith

Along Came a Dog  Meindert  Dejong

That about sums it up I hope to visit our zoo at the end of the second block and have Miss Sky keep a nature journal.



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