Sunday, July 8, 2012

Do birds have belly buttons?

At the daycare center where I work, a co-worker was sitting at a table with one or two children, and visiting with our small white, budgie. This nice little bird, called Sweetie, is very vocal throughout the day, and seems to respond to the childrens' attempts to whistle, and tweet for her.

I joined the group, and we sat quietly enjoying our time while most of the children were napping. One small girl asked me, "Do birds have belly buttons?" Rather than attempt to answer her question, I told her that we could try to find out. It's always preferable to research a question together, rather than providing answers. My first thought would have been that because birds aren't mammals, they wouldn't have belly buttons.

This evening I decided to type this question on Google, and was abit surprised to find several entries on this subject.

The Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology, discussed this question in a section titled, Unusual and Interesting Questions. It seems that the very young birds do have a scar from the cord which attaches the embryo of the bird to the yolk, when in the egg. As the bird matures the scar disappears, so one could say that the baby birds do have belly buttons.

I'm now feeling a little excited about how we might make this subject into a project for the children. There are some good childrens' picture books on belly buttons, both whimsical and factual, so I'll be planning a library trip soon.

This is the best kind of curriculum planning I feel, when it comes from a sincere interest on the part of the actual children in the center. Hmmm, I can just imagine some interesting art, dramatic play, and movement activities that may develop from this....

Below, is a link with another answer to this question. I was really quite surprised to find these entries.

Do birds have belly buttons?


Anonymous said...

I would of never thought of this question, but I will bet you hear some good ones.

See, a person learns something every day.

Teri Casper said...

Leave it t a child to ask such an interesting question! I can't watch the video because my wifi is too slow but I will sometime. I will check out your link tho.
Having a bird around the children is such a great idea. Isn't it interesting how one question can cause you to think out of the box and provide even more learning. Please share with us what you find and how receptive the children are to your program.


Mullin Avenue Workshop said...

This is exactly how I thought, there is always something new to learn. :)

Yes, I'm enjoying the bird, she provides a lovely songscape, and a lively personality to the center.
I will try to share when we start learning more together. :)
BTW, I'm so glad that you have got Wifi now!

The Boston Lady said...

This is fantastic, Brenda. I remem ber when my daughter was in third grade her teacher showed the class that baby chicks did indeed have a similar umbilical attachment that we humans/mammals do. She broke open and egg and showed them the white string piece that went from the yolk to the edge of the white of the egg. I think of this almost everytime I crack open eggs.

Sounds like you are enjoying your new job! Ann

Mullin Avenue Workshop said...

Thanks, Ann,
Yes I am loving being back with children, there is always something going on!
Thanks for this story from your daughters grade 3 class. :)