"A fish lives in the water where it must breathe, move and find its food. The water world is quite different from the air world and the fish have... form, senses and habits which fit them for life in the water." -Handbook of Nature Study, p.147
The Handbook of Nature Study suggests to show a diagram of a fish with all the parts labeled to the children so that they "will be able to learn the parts of the fish by consulting it and not be compelled to commit them to memory arbitrarily." We decided that they could include a diagram in their notebooks that they could consult, but I did not require them to memorize them. I did, however, immediately began using the terms in my questions to them about the fish.
We talked about how the fish moved and how they used their different fins. We also talked about their scales and about how the mouth is always moving, making swallowing motions.
We talked about how the fish takes in water like we do air and as the water runs over their gills, the oxygen is removed just as the oxygen is removed from air in our lungs.
sources and inspiration:
- The Handbook of Nature Study, Anna Comstock