Anatomy & Physiology Wraps up Dissections

Brooke Cotten, News and Feature Editor

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Anatomy & Physiology teachers, Tamara Lee and Jeanette McKinney, give their students the opportunity to gain a better grasp on the functions of the human body by performing dissections on rabbits.
“The dissections are going very well this year considering we had to make the switch from cats to rabbits. I was a little hesitant about not having ever dissected rabbits before, but they are incredibly comparable to cats so the students are still able to learn the same basic things. The main difference will be the digestive system because cats are carnivores and rabbits are herbivores, so part of their digestive systems are a little different. Overall they have been quite comparable,” Lee said.
Each day is a new experience that opens up more opportunities for the students to get a better understanding of how the human body really functions.
“My daily routine depends on if it’s a lab day or a lecture day. If it’s a lab day the students have been instructed to immediately proceed to the lab area and start on their lab, having already watched the video for homework so that they know what to do. If it’s a lecture day we usually start with a warm up, then we lecture and take notes. I normally tell a couple stories, color diagrams of parts of the human body, and then we wind up with an exit ticket,” Lee said.
Working with teenagers can be frightening for some, but for Lee, it helps make her classroom environment enjoyable.
“What I enjoy most about my students dissecting is their development of their dissecting skills and the confidence they build from the first day of lab to the end of school. It’s remarkable how many skills they have at the end of the year. Most of my students are enthusiastic learners and can take what we learn in class and make it make sense to something that already exists in the world. They are also able to see the reasoning of why certain things happen or why certain symptoms express themselves the way they do,” Lee said.
McKinney and Lee both have a front seat as they watch their students become fascinated with the human body and as they get an opportunity that many other schools do not.
“The thing I like best about watching my students dissect is that they actually get to see and touch the specimen instead of looking at it on a piece of paper. They get to feel how each thing works and what the actual structure of it is. I like the idea that they actually get to dissect because some schools don’t, so this gives them the opportunity to pretend to be surgeons,” McKinney said.
Having students who care about the subject and are eager to learn has also made McKinney’s classroom a place her students are excited to enter.
“The cool part about anatomy students is that they want to be here. They chose the class as an elective and want to learn anatomy and want to know how the human body works.The students make teaching enjoyable because they want to be involved and are just as fascinated as I am,” McKinney said.
Watching her students become eager about anatomy motivates McKinney to do her best to make sure they find the human body as captivating as she does.
“I enjoy teaching anatomy because I think that the human body is absolutely amazing. There are so many intricate things that go on within the human body to make us what we are and function the way we do,” McKinney said.
After a long and exciting year, both teachers strive for their students to find more appreciation for the human body and its functions.
“By the end of the year I want my students to be in awe of the human body; how remarkable it is and how it’s intertwined,” Lee said.

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