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Discussion Topic: Wisconsin Middle School Class Dissects Deer

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December 21, 2009

Discussion Topic: Wisconsin Middle School Class Dissects Deer

By Dave Hurteau

From the State Journal:

[Students] recently viewed the dissection of a dead deer to culminate a deer/ecology unit in seventh-grade science at the Evansville middle school.

“It was exciting because I don’t really get to see the organs when I’m out deer hunting,” said seventh-grader Alex Shoemaker. . . .

But not everyone was captivated by the sight and smell of a deer being cut open.

“Two of my friends left. They thought it was disgusting,” said seventh-grader Emily Yoerger.

Seventh-grade science teacher Bruce Curtis. . . has been scheduling the activity for about 10 years. He gives students an opportunity to pass if they think they’ll get queasy, but typically only a few students opt out each year.

Would your kids be excited to see a deer dissected in their class room? (Tell the truth.)

Comments (26)

Top Rated
All Comments
from kolbster wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

i think it would be funny just to watch some of the kids faces, me i could care less if the cut open a deer in my school i have already worked up or helped work up over 15 deer this year alone.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from gman3186 wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

i bet if they hit the gut bag they could clear out that room

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from jeffo52284 wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

if kids in this area wanted to see a deer cut up and dissected they would not have a problem doing so. i think the same kids watching it done in class would be the same kids who do it while hunting everyone else would opt out

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Walt Smith wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

My two teenage daughters would find it interesting to a point, The point of being asked to take part. That's the point where they lose pretty much all intrest.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from earlyriser81 wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

When I was in school we used pigs. I don't see much difference. It is good for kids to experience such things at the right age. I would have no objections to my child participating.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from hjohn429 wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

I would definatley do that in my school if I had the chance. All we get to dissect is a baby pig. That looks cool and it would make great education for deer hunters.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from dighunter wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

I am interested where he gets the deer from. Are they ones that he hunts or does he buy them from a scientific supply company? My students dissect bullfrogs and I think it makes a big difference if they are able to get their hands into it and work.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from MLH wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

Great that they are doing this. I hope they point out the difference between the organs and teeth of ruminants and omnivores.

A butcher gives a demo every year at a local outdoor show. One year the axis deer he used had a fawn. That was a surprise, even to him. It happens with farm raised deer. When I was in school a dissected shark was pregnant. Everyone wanted to see it. Some said, "Gross!" but couldn't take their eyes off of the baby sharks. Most kids are curious.

-1 Good Comment? | | Report
from seadog wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

I think dissection of a real animal should be a graduation requirement. A lot of biology classes now use "virtual" dissection on a computer. Even biology teachers are too squeemish to to do a real dissection?--that's ridiculous. It's part of what I like to call the "overcivilization" of America.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from mopedfredd wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

This is one of the most memorable moments in science for me. I still remember the smell of the piglet and the feel of the cool organs.
I have never lost the respect of any science teacher, ever because of that experience.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Walt Smith wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

One thing for sure, that table looks a little small! He! He!

-1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Brittle wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

well im 12 and i think alot of the girls would leave and some guys would leave but i think it should happen we need to know where food and animals come from

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from country road wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

I think that's a good presentation. I know I'd have liked it---I'd been cleaning small game for a couple of years by the time I was in seventh grade, but I was raised in a rural area and that wasn't unusual.
My thirteen year-old daughter used to regularly attend deer cleaning at the camp, even though she chose to watch, rather than participate.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bella wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

Give that guy "teacher of the Year"! Talk about giving kids useful real world educational experiences! Good Job Teacher!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from tbogg10 wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

i think it is a very good idea it shows kids food doesn't just show up on shelves, but it should be worked for. if i had a kid i would have no problem letting him/her watch it.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from 60256 wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

I would love that to happen at my school. Sadly enough, the most complex animal dissected at my high school is a cat. It would never happen. Thank the Lord the day it does.

Nate

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from coho310 wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

Whatever happened to plain old frogs?

This sounds like a really brilliant idea, I wish I could give this teacher a +1!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from j-johnson17 wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

I think something like this is an excellent learning tool whether you are a hunter or not. Learning about something's physiology is very helpful to most people regardless of how they use the information. This sounds like an excellent teaching tool.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from OrangeNeckInNY wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

Question is: did they get to grill it afterwards?

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from jwallen wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

Growing up in ranch country we would bring in a steer every fall and shoot it in the head with a .22, hang it with the loader then skin and gut it. If an animal died out on pasture or in the feedlot we would do an animal autopsy to see if we could figure out what caused their death. We raised almost all our own food and there were no mysteries as to animal procreation. Modern city life has taken that away from children today. I think it is good for them to be exposed to a little blood. Before they get to middle school they should milk a cow, attend the birth of an animal and cook a meal where everything was gathered that day. Their natural curiosity might lead some of them to become the next generation of first responders, doctors or veterinarians. It is also a first step in controling your reaction to things that make you uncomfortable. Later in life it will serve them well when something happens and they need to keep control of the situation and continue to think. Most of the people that are reading this already have a handle on things. This should be taken to the city schools where they need to get a handle on reality and quit letting Holywood do the teaching.

-1 Good Comment? | | Report
from fliphuntr14 wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

My biology teacher did that with a bear that got hit by a car and also cleaned all the bones off a deer and had the class reconstruct the skeleton of the deer its in a case at my school today. unfortunately the teacher is not.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Casey Walker wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

As a middle school science teacher myself I think this is great! Science should be a hands on experience. As for the students that leave the room I hope they were made to do an alternate assignment for the grade. I have a lot of things I don't like to do but I still am responsible for them. We have far to many Helicopter parents that hover over their children "protecting" them for great life learning experiences. Way to go Mr. Curtis.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Nic Meador wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

I come out of Oklahoma, and deer hunting is big enough that if you heard that someone hadnt been deer hunting it was a shock. If a guy opted out he would probobly be made fun of.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from cwillis wrote 4 years 15 weeks ago

I wish more schools would teach about the biology of wild animals. Once they become interested in an animal they might want to become more involved in its conservation thus learning about the positive impact hunting has for the future of our game species.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from whitetailkjf wrote 4 years 15 weeks ago

I'm 13 and i think it would be SO AWESOME!!!!!!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from muskiemaster wrote 4 years 15 weeks ago

wish I had gotten to do this, when I was in seventh grade. the best I ever got to do was cut a chicken thigh that was store bought in 6th grade.

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

from OrangeNeckInNY wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

Question is: did they get to grill it afterwards?

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from gman3186 wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

i bet if they hit the gut bag they could clear out that room

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from jeffo52284 wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

if kids in this area wanted to see a deer cut up and dissected they would not have a problem doing so. i think the same kids watching it done in class would be the same kids who do it while hunting everyone else would opt out

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from dighunter wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

I am interested where he gets the deer from. Are they ones that he hunts or does he buy them from a scientific supply company? My students dissect bullfrogs and I think it makes a big difference if they are able to get their hands into it and work.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Brittle wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

well im 12 and i think alot of the girls would leave and some guys would leave but i think it should happen we need to know where food and animals come from

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bella wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

Give that guy "teacher of the Year"! Talk about giving kids useful real world educational experiences! Good Job Teacher!

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Casey Walker wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

As a middle school science teacher myself I think this is great! Science should be a hands on experience. As for the students that leave the room I hope they were made to do an alternate assignment for the grade. I have a lot of things I don't like to do but I still am responsible for them. We have far to many Helicopter parents that hover over their children "protecting" them for great life learning experiences. Way to go Mr. Curtis.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Walt Smith wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

My two teenage daughters would find it interesting to a point, The point of being asked to take part. That's the point where they lose pretty much all intrest.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from seadog wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

I think dissection of a real animal should be a graduation requirement. A lot of biology classes now use "virtual" dissection on a computer. Even biology teachers are too squeemish to to do a real dissection?--that's ridiculous. It's part of what I like to call the "overcivilization" of America.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from tbogg10 wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

i think it is a very good idea it shows kids food doesn't just show up on shelves, but it should be worked for. if i had a kid i would have no problem letting him/her watch it.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from 60256 wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

I would love that to happen at my school. Sadly enough, the most complex animal dissected at my high school is a cat. It would never happen. Thank the Lord the day it does.

Nate

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from j-johnson17 wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

I think something like this is an excellent learning tool whether you are a hunter or not. Learning about something's physiology is very helpful to most people regardless of how they use the information. This sounds like an excellent teaching tool.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from fliphuntr14 wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

My biology teacher did that with a bear that got hit by a car and also cleaned all the bones off a deer and had the class reconstruct the skeleton of the deer its in a case at my school today. unfortunately the teacher is not.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Nic Meador wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

I come out of Oklahoma, and deer hunting is big enough that if you heard that someone hadnt been deer hunting it was a shock. If a guy opted out he would probobly be made fun of.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from kolbster wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

i think it would be funny just to watch some of the kids faces, me i could care less if the cut open a deer in my school i have already worked up or helped work up over 15 deer this year alone.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from earlyriser81 wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

When I was in school we used pigs. I don't see much difference. It is good for kids to experience such things at the right age. I would have no objections to my child participating.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from hjohn429 wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

I would definatley do that in my school if I had the chance. All we get to dissect is a baby pig. That looks cool and it would make great education for deer hunters.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from mopedfredd wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

This is one of the most memorable moments in science for me. I still remember the smell of the piglet and the feel of the cool organs.
I have never lost the respect of any science teacher, ever because of that experience.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from country road wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

I think that's a good presentation. I know I'd have liked it---I'd been cleaning small game for a couple of years by the time I was in seventh grade, but I was raised in a rural area and that wasn't unusual.
My thirteen year-old daughter used to regularly attend deer cleaning at the camp, even though she chose to watch, rather than participate.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from coho310 wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

Whatever happened to plain old frogs?

This sounds like a really brilliant idea, I wish I could give this teacher a +1!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from cwillis wrote 4 years 15 weeks ago

I wish more schools would teach about the biology of wild animals. Once they become interested in an animal they might want to become more involved in its conservation thus learning about the positive impact hunting has for the future of our game species.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from whitetailkjf wrote 4 years 15 weeks ago

I'm 13 and i think it would be SO AWESOME!!!!!!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from muskiemaster wrote 4 years 15 weeks ago

wish I had gotten to do this, when I was in seventh grade. the best I ever got to do was cut a chicken thigh that was store bought in 6th grade.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from MLH wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

Great that they are doing this. I hope they point out the difference between the organs and teeth of ruminants and omnivores.

A butcher gives a demo every year at a local outdoor show. One year the axis deer he used had a fawn. That was a surprise, even to him. It happens with farm raised deer. When I was in school a dissected shark was pregnant. Everyone wanted to see it. Some said, "Gross!" but couldn't take their eyes off of the baby sharks. Most kids are curious.

-1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Walt Smith wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

One thing for sure, that table looks a little small! He! He!

-1 Good Comment? | | Report
from jwallen wrote 4 years 16 weeks ago

Growing up in ranch country we would bring in a steer every fall and shoot it in the head with a .22, hang it with the loader then skin and gut it. If an animal died out on pasture or in the feedlot we would do an animal autopsy to see if we could figure out what caused their death. We raised almost all our own food and there were no mysteries as to animal procreation. Modern city life has taken that away from children today. I think it is good for them to be exposed to a little blood. Before they get to middle school they should milk a cow, attend the birth of an animal and cook a meal where everything was gathered that day. Their natural curiosity might lead some of them to become the next generation of first responders, doctors or veterinarians. It is also a first step in controling your reaction to things that make you uncomfortable. Later in life it will serve them well when something happens and they need to keep control of the situation and continue to think. Most of the people that are reading this already have a handle on things. This should be taken to the city schools where they need to get a handle on reality and quit letting Holywood do the teaching.

-1 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment