Crocuses are made up mostly of air. The same tiny pieces of egg I ate this morning are now flying out of my body with every breath, and many of these same pieces will end up in the plants sitting out by the maple tree, also made up mostly from air.
Every now and again, a child trusts me (though not the science) enough to believe this, but to believe this without demanding sufficient evidence reduces the science to magical thinking.
So we hide our magical thinking in code:
CO2 + H2O → C6H12O6 + O2
Easy enough to memorize, easy enough to test, and another child finishes her years of formal schooling missing out on the beauty around her.
|(I think I borrowed this from Jessica Pierce.)|
This is terribly sad.
No, not missing the beauty of knowing the flow of particles from her cells to plants then back to her again. Grasping that requires a little bit more chemistry (and madness) than most sophomores can muster.
|I keep slugs in my classroom--not sure they fit in the curriculum.|
The real sin is this--our children sit in rooms studying science as catechism, because we test science as catechism, and outside, just a few feet away from her classroom window, the thing we call "tree" sits unnoticed as it creeps its way towards the sun.
One day I took my students outside, told them to find a tree, and describe it in their science notebooks.
That may have been the most important thing I've done for that class all year.