Friday, February 22, 2013

Plagues are People Too?

We studied the Bubonic Plague this week in history. The kids were fascinated, of course, being the blood-thirsty little pirates that they are.

We discussed the symptoms, the devastation in Europe, the fact that entire families and villages were wiped out, you know, all the gory details. I pulled no punches.

So what would you expect to be the reaction to this horrible part of history? Should they perhaps imagine that they were living in that time? Should they pretend to be doctors? Should they think about the consequences of unhygienic practices - or should they, perhaps, start anthropomorphizing the actual bacterium, and develop a relationship with it? If you've read any part of this blog previously, you should know the answer to that.

Here is Black Death watching Zaya write a letter to Grandma Lilibeth, in which he details the things we learned this week. He (the bacterium) occasionally made cute little squeaking noises as he listened to Zaya describe his past behavior.

And here we have Black Death watching Mim color in her map of the progress of the contagion. The bacterium, in his squeaky little voice, said things like, "Ooh! I remember Paris! It was lovely!" and "I remember Rome, I got to go to the Colosseum!"

So...I suppose I bear part of the blame for the fact that they own a plush Black Death bacterium in the first place, but I don't think I can be blamed for all of it, because they wouldn't own it if Zaya hadn't been born with an obsession for microbiology.

 Before having children, I would never have imagined that I would be thinking "That's so cute!" while talking about the world-wide horror that was the Bubonic Plague. Either I'm losing my mind, or I've already lost it.

1 comment:

Lilibeth said...

Since two of my favorite books in high school were Crime and Science and Rats, Mice, and History, I can't really react in horror. At least they are learning. That day when they realize what it all meant will come some day.