Wednesday, August 13, 2014

What Would Happen if You Turned Your Child's Frustrating Distraction Into an Accidental Scientific Investigation?

I hear my neighbors out the window, biking home. The little girl is dillydalling. Her dad, already home, is audibly annnoyed. And then she screams:

I found a worm!

Dad sighs; his demeanor shifts: A WORM! Bring it here! Show it to me!

I hear her bring her bike, and worm, s.l.o.w.l.y. to her dad. Her patient dad.
I can still hear them through the window, discussing this worm. It's a boy and a girl, he tells her. I found himher near the grass, she reports. He asks her what she thinks himher likes to do?

He doesn't need to lecture his daughter, of training-wheels age, about hermaphroditic reproductive strategies. Or that her discovery is probably a member of the Amynthas genus, and that there are native and invasive earthworms. Or how himher burrows in the soil eating dead and decaying things; such a small thing making mechanical and chemical changes to the soil. Or even that Charles Darwin wrote: "It may be doubted whether there are many other animals which have played so important a part in the history of the world, as have these lowly organized creatures."

He just connected with her and fostered her connection with nature. Over a worm.

No comments:

Post a Comment