by Victoria Lieberman:
The classroom filled up with the smell of fetal pigs. The class anxiously waited for our first dissection. We went over the safety procedures first then put on our goggles, aprons and gloves. Our NYU student teacher, Ms. Brush, demonstrated how to dissect the pig without damaging any of the organs that we were to observe.
The class split into groups of 3 or 4. After a minute of deciding which squeamish teenager would cut open the pig, one brave group member stepped up to the plate. Jaws dropped as she grabbed the scalpel and…
So, I won’t go into each cut that we made on the pig but our ultimate goal was to be able to see all the organs in the digestive and respiratory systems. We identified the different part such as the stomach, kidneys and heart. It was very fascinating to see the the inside of an animal which had a similar anatomy to ours. It made me better understand what was going in inside my body at that moment and how it all connects.
The day after my class had completed this lab work, we took the pigs back out. This time it wasn’t just us but a 6th grade class as well. I helped lead the dissection in my group and the curiosity that the 6th graders had made it very interesting to help teach them about the anatomy of the pig organs. I was very grateful to be able to be there with the 6th graders and help them with this learning experience. I was fascinated about learning about the pig anatomy as well and being able to understand how it all works together. I could keep going on about the amazement of it all but I think that one 6th grader descried it best when he said “It was lit!”
by Mali Jackson:
In our 8th grade classes, we did a pig dissection lab and we had an opportunity to interact with the various systems we were studying in Living Environment. Students had been very nervous to do our very first in-class dissection, this lab is rare amongst 8th graders, and we were all very grateful and excited that we got the opportunity not only to do the dissections, but be experts and educate the younger kids.
Our student teacher,Ms. Brush, from NYU led us in our dissection lab. Before teaching the 6th graders, we got a chance ourselves to learn about and observe the fetal pigs. Ms.Brush gave us a demonstration before hand, and we were all in awe. We were eager to start yet nervous to interact with such advanced materials such as scalpels, probes and scissors to open and explore the pigs. Once we examined and located all of the parts of the pig we were assigned to find, we got to do some general exploration of the pigs. I particularly enjoyed independently looking at the pig because we learned a lot about the anatomy and systems of the pig.
Once we were fully acquainted with the pigs, we got the chance to be leaders and educate the 6th graders about what we learned. Their curiosity was very exciting to me and it was such a great feeling of accomplishment and pride to be able to pass on what I had learned in the lab. I think it’s safe to say that the 6th graders and the 8th graders really enjoyed the getting to dissect and explore the fetal pigs.
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