24 Jan Animal Welfare Lessons for Children; the Impact of Biology Dissection
Teaching children about animal rights and animal welfare is an important life lesson. While most children learn their compassion and treatment of animals from the behavior of their parents, there are some children who formulate their impressions based on religion or academic settings.
For many children, the exposure to dissection of animals at school is quite common. In fact, biology classes often require dissection of an animal as part of the curriculum. For children who are heavily involved in animal welfare or animal rights programs, the mandatory dissection of an animal, usually in a biology class, can be met with some resistance.
Best Education for Children
If your child is heading off to high school and is enrolled in a biology course, you may want to speak with the school counselor about the dissection requirements. If your child is especially vulnerable to distress when in the presence of animal carcass, the dissection of an animal, in a biology class, may pose even greater distress.
Understanding the distress associated with dissection, many school districts are offering optional curriculum requirements for students who specifically make the request. While the best lesson on biology is learned from the dissection process, the school districts generally do not offer the alternate curriculum to all students. Instead, the alternative is reserved for students who make a specific request for the option.
Alternates to dissection may include online tutorials, the use of plastic carcass and even alternate curriculum that involves no dissection observance at all. It is important, however, to ask the school before the biology class begins. In many cases, if you do not make this request on behalf your child early in the school year, the school counselor may not be able to make the accommodations for your child.
Animal welfare and animal rescue are important lessons to teach your children. With your best efforts in these life lessons, there may be distress in your child when required to dissect an animal at school, within a biology class setting. If you anticipate this will be an issue for your child, speak with the school counselor about the alternate curriculum options. In doing so, you can promote a more emotionally healthy response in your child while still requiring that your child meet the academic performance standards required for a biology course. The most important aspect is speaking with the high school counselor at the beginning of the school year rather than waiting until the dissection assignment is upon you.