By Victoria Cheng ’16 and Zita (Lok Yiu) Chau ’16
Get your scalpels and get ready to slice and dice. Anatomy classes are holding dissection labs for a better understanding of the bodily systems.
Dissection, what many people believe to be either fascinating or extremely terrifying, is the process of cutting up a body or object to study its internal organs. It is one of the many procedures through which students could learn and understand the basic knowledge of the human body.
“I am surprised about how alike we are to animals,” said Brandon Wu ‘16.
During the first term the lessons consist of the human body. Each topic will be tested to see how well students are processing the new information. There are three dissections every term matching the lessons taught in class. During the first term, the dissections include the heart, the eyes, and the internal organs of a frog. Dissections in store for the second term include a chicken’s wing, a sheep or bull’s testicle, and a pregnant rat.
“I am not disgusted by the dissection because it’s a hands on experience that not many people get, and I feel that it is a privilege,” Celia Chen ‘16 said.
Many believe that by doing dissection, the students can understand what’s going on inside our bodies. Not only does it teach them about the organs but also the process of blood circulation and movements of the body. Some say it’s a fun procedure because it can make you feel like a surgeon, and it is also the first step in becoming a doctor.
“By doing dissections, we can incorporate what we saw in the lessons, which makes the information more applicable,” said Michelle Neminovsky ’16.
Mrs. Margaret DeSimone, the anatomy teacher said, “I think dissection gives a hand-on experience on how things actually look in the body rather than from a textbook. Textbook doesn’t actually look like what it does in real life.”
However, those who are disgusted by the process of cutting up the deceased animal, object to participating in the procedure.
“It’s a little gross sometimes and you don’t want to touch the object you’re dissecting, but it’s great,” Ilana Bronfman ‘16 said, “since we’re learning about anatomical parts, we might as well dissect them and see what’s inside.”
Wu said, “The heart looked nasty, but everyone ends up doing work with the organ anyway.”
Because the school doesn’t provide the organs for the anatomy class, Mrs. DeSimone takes the money out of her own wallet to buy them herself. Each organ cost about $4.00 each. Even though the organs themselves are not costly, the sum total for all the classes is.
The anatomy class is Mrs. DeSimone’s own curriculum. Prior to Mrs. DeSimone taking over, it had no set curriculum for the course and the only class was taught at seven in the morning. Now, there are a total of six anatomy classes.
Mrs. DeSimone said, “I love the class and all the topics because I hand-picked them.”
Even though dissection is thought of as a stomach-churning process, students benefit from the visual the procedure gives. With the images in mind, students can properly visualize the organs while learning in class or taking a test. They also enjoy the learning experience of working with other students in a group.
“I think it’s really cool because we’re doing something fun and hands on for once,” said Bronfman.