Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Lessons in DNA

Recently Roo has been choosing selections out of this book for his bedtime reading.

A few nights ago we read the chapter about The Cell.  He was very interested in the “twisty ladder” and proceeded to ask lots of questions.

Is that ladder in every cell?” Roo asked pointing to the picture of the nucleus in the cell.

"Yes.” I replied “That twisty ladder is a double helix and it’s called DNA. It holds the code that makes you different from everyone else.”

In an effort to clarify, Roo asked, “ So, everyone has a different code?”

“Yes sir” pointing to each rung of the ladder I continued, “Parts of the code may tell your cells to make blonde hair and green eyes and the code in another person’s body will tell their cells to make black hair and blue eyes.”

[long pause] “What about twins? Is their code different” Roo asks?

uhhhhhhhh” I stalled as I tried to recall every CSI episode I’ve seen that had dealt with twin DNA. “I think the code is the same. If it isn’t the same then maybe it is so similar that scientists might have a hard time finding the differences.”

“hmmmm” he said, pausing to digest what I had said. Picture an age-ed professor stroking his beard while he processes information that will lead him to a breakthrough in his research and you’ll have the look on Roo’s face (minus the beard of course) “sooooooo…if I want a twin                                      I just have to copy my code?”

                                                   **mouth open and eyes wide** uhhhhhh….”

What I said next was filled will wisdom and guidance. It was eloquent and concise and it had the perfect balance of warning and encouragement. I would share it with you but I was in a state of shock and can’t remember it exactly. I do remember that I had images of the movies “The Island” and “Multiplicity” crashing through my thoughts and I couldn’t help but smile.

When a parent sets out to teach a child
(with an anatomy book in hand)
 they should expect some difficult questions.

I though I had.
However, his question was not on my list…

…add it to yours…
…just in case. J

Oh and in case I was unclear, if you are looking for a book to introduce anatomy to your little one, I think this one is FANTASTIC! The pictures are beautiful, the explanations are simple and the context is appropriate for young readers. The one downside, Roo wants more.  After a few times through he started asking me questions about things that were not labeled and I didn't have the information (but I suppose that is a problem with lots of books and hence why writers are making a killing on series.) Anyway,  I am now looking to purchase one (or both?) of these books, from a 1st year med student in order to satisfy Roo's need to know….




MrsDixon said...

Thank you for visiting The-Doll-House! I really love this story! It's amazing how much kids retain, even though it leaves us confused with no answers! :)

Erin said...

You are a much better mom than me. I can't read books like these to my kids because I'm not very smart and wouldn't have very many answers for them! I guess that's why you're homeschooling your kids and I"m not. :-)

Gwenevere said...

WHATEVER Erin.....you can do it too. Just watch more HOUSE, LAW & ORDER, CSI and all that other great stuff....you think I'm smart? You should see me dance...so you think you can dance has taught me wonders!

Tillotson Family said...

Hi. Good call on the DNA. Yet, my twins are not exactly identical and their personalities are opposites. They wouldn't really make good clones of each other. Funny reasoning by him though. Please tell him Hi from Gabby. She was asking about him the other day! Hope all is well.

Gwenevere said...

Identical Twins....it's an interesting thing when you think about it. We accept the idea that God assigns a spirit to each fetus and one was essentially a "copy" of the other and so the identical DNA creates 2 individuals, yet no one seems to know what to do with the soul of a clone or the idea of a clone having a soul? Wouldn't a clone be just as individual as one identical twin is to the other? When man learns how to create a spirit, that is when things will get really exciting. :)

Tell Gabby, Roo say's hello right back!