Ok - so before you read, this entry revolves around a dead bird. We did not kill it, we found it lying peacefully under the swing in the park around the corner. I pointed it out to Owen, who was soon looking at it, then picking it up, then stretching it's wings out. I have to say I agree with Owen, it was so interesting. I have no idea how the bird died. A neighbor suggested that it may have been hit by a car. It looked like it's neck was broken.
After Owen had examined it for a while he wanted to bring it home to show Sam and Ella who were at school. After school, they too carried it around and examined it. I then explained that it would have to be buried. Before we buried it Ella drew a picture. Our kids have found that a great way to remember something or someone who they won't see again for a long time. I was impressed by the detail in Ella's picture. Sam also took some photos. Ella then placed the bird in a small box with some straw ready for it's burial. The next morning (Saturday), Chris took the kids into the woods behind the house and buried the bird.
A couple of years ago I would probably not have let the kids even touch the bird. But, I've come to realize that for many children, their lives are very detached from nature. Over the past year I've let the kids spend more time outside and expanded their physical boundaries. They learn so much! Nature is endlessly different, far more interesting than any toy, and so much more interesting than a text book! Anyway, I think they learned a great deal from the dead bird. Not only did they get to examine it up close, but it also gave us a chance to talk about what happens to us when we die.
And just in case your wondering, yes they did have to wash their hands really, really well after touching it!