Thursday, March 20, 2008

WARNING!! Disturbing and Graphic...

Consider yourselves warned. It's clear, right? The title of this post is not ambiguous in any way, so if you proceed it's your own judgment at work here. I do not want any complaints. This post is real, raw, graphic, disturbing, harsh, gross and the images will sear themselves into your brain and you will not be able to expunge them. I'm not kidding.

Of all of my kids' workshops at the recent homeschooling conference, some of the best for them and most fun and most interesting were the Harry Potter ones. In one session they played Quidditch. The kids were sorted into houses and then Hufflepuff, Slytherin, Ravenclaw and Gryffindor players were all mixed up hodge podge on the field playing wildly together. In another session, the kids learned to read palms and made goopy corn starch slime (is it a solid or a liquid?). But, perhaps the most captivating session involved the making of a garden...a mold garden!!

This session involved a bit of a leap of faith and trust in the instructors by the kids because the mold garden wasn't going to bloom until days after the conference. They were given a list of ingredients and instructions and arranged them in class in take-out plastic containers and then they brought their carefully composed garden home with the object of finding the perfect place to store them to ensure optimal growth. Oh, and grow they have... They have bloomed, developed, matured and grown to incredible proportions.

Would you like to see the kids' mold gardens? OK. Here they are.

First you see the gardens with the lids still on...
Can you see the mold through the plastic lids? I can. That's a lot of grey in there, isn't it?! You know what the ingredients are? Here's the list: ghost toast (white bread), goblin fingers (carrots), ogre toenails (potato slices), blind newt eyeballs (grapes that the kids had to peel), moon cheese (american cheese), dragon innards (spaghetti), bogeyman brains (pineapple pieces). Yeah, nice huh?

OK. Here's a shot with the lids off...mgghhhphphph...ack...I cab nob breeve!!!

Oh my God--here's a close up!
Oooooo!! Look at the ghost toast with the green/blue spots! Look at that goblin finger--how'd they get that thing?! Look at the mold growing to the left--look at the threads of it...mgghghghggphphpaagh!

Here's the last shot.
Look at the dragon innards all curled up! Look at that puffy white mold on the bogeyman brains!! Look at the green spots!! Agghghgghgmmphphphph!!!!

The kids' education is a beautiful thing.

Whatever, and wherever and however they learn is what it's all about. I fully support their learning about mold in a fun way. These mold gardens are great, but the kids have been warned that they're going this weekend. There was some contrary talk about them keeping them in their rooms...



Shez said...

what a fun activity. I've just shown the pics to my kids and they are all gung ho to do it themselves. Once we've grown our mold, I'll get my husband to take pics of the mold through the microscope. That should make for some fun pics.

Laura said...

Wow! How do you take pictures through a microscope? Please do post them when you get them--I'll show my kids!

Dawn said...

So cool! That's it, I'm starting a mold garden with the kids tommorrow...And I love your blog!

Laura said...

Hi Dawn. We checked out your comic blog and my husband said it reminds him of Dinotopia--very cool drawings with a sort of stylized Edwardian feel.

I'm glad you love my blog--I love doing it.


Shez said...

I've just published the second edition of The Carnival of Cool Homeschoolers and have included your delightfully gross mold garden post. Come on over and read the carnival, there are some really great posts in it.

I thoroughly enjoy reading your blog. Thanks for making my days more interesting. I hope that you'll submit many of your interesting posts to the carnival in future

over at Homeschooled Twins

Shez said...

I meant to answer your question about how we can get to take pictures of the mold through a microscope. My husband is a pathologist and he has all the equipment we need - a high powered, stereoscopic microscipe with attached camera mounting.

momof3feistykids said...

How did you guys get into our refrigerator? Sorry, I couldn't resist. What a great project! My son and I have grown molds as a science project, but it was nothing this impressive. :-)

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