Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Bats bats bats

Hannah was flipping through one of our encyclopedias a month or so ago and came across the entry for bats. She asked me to read some of it to her. We learned about echolocation and for the next three days our house was filled with screeching echolocation. I tried explaining to her that we humans actually couldn't hear most bats' calls because they were too 'high', but that just made her echolocate at a higher pitch.

Our next trip to the library saw me getting several bat books for her (including this one that will be the jumping off point for a whole 'nother post) and several for me so that I could answer more of her questions. Word of warning - don't go learning to much about bats. You'll lose all fear of them and want to get actively involved in saving them.

One of Hannah's books had this picture in it -

I still can't look at that picture without giggling. He makes me happy. His cheeks are full of fruit.

And check out this artwork Hannah did while in the throes of bat love.

It's a picture of two bats.

The tape is the flowers that they're about to land on to eat.

Little circles of tape. 3-D art. How 'bout that.

For more on bats check out Bat Conservation International.

These books were ones that I got that I really enjoyed:
The Moon by Whale Light (in which I also learn about how very ancient crocodiles are)
Owls Aren't Wise and Bats Aren't Blind (in which I learn that opossums don't pretend to be dead when they're scared, they actually get so scared that their body goes in to a trance like state - a bit like fainting goats)
Darkwing - a novel by Kenneth Oppel about the first bats, way back when dinosaurs were dying off - very well written

I can't recommend any of the 'kids bat books' that we got for Hannah because they were all pretty bland and generic, nothing that really grabbed her and fascinated her as much as the encyclopedia entry had.


Lindsay said...

I love her artwork! Have you seen the Eyewitness Bat book for kids? I used to work at a book store and while I don't remember the Bat one specifically, I know that a lot of kids really liked the series because there is a lot of information in there with lots of pictures. There's another one I remember seeing when I worked there, maybe this one? We always had a lot of them around Halloween so it's actually something I'm familiar with lol.

There are times I want to bottle Meredith up and keep her exactly the way she is, but really I can't wait to see all the directions unschooling takes us. :)

Lindsay said...

Actually, I was curious and I think this might be the one I was thinking of and couldn't remember. I wouldn't know for sure without seeing the actual book but both of them have good reviews on Amazon if you are looking for more.

Michael said...

If you have the time, look up human echolocation. I've heard of blind people that train themselves to be able to use it. Haven't heard anything on that in a while though so don't assume I know what I'm talking about :)