Students dive deeper into their learning with dissections


Samantha White

With a mixed emotion of excitement and disgust, Sophia Moorhead, seventh grade theater major, and Keon Allen, band major, dissect a bullfrog. During the dissection seventh graders learned background information on the frogs and got to dissect learning all the different parts of the frog.

Students put on their gloves and took out their tools as bullfrogs were laid in front of them.  Every year seventh grade students get the opportunity to dissect frogs.

“The main purpose for having dissections, is to give students the opportunity to explore classification of different organisms, and to compare their anatomy,” Karen Anthony, science teacher, said.

Throughout the year, seventh grade students got to participate in four different dissections; a squid, a dogfish shark, a bullfrog, and a fetal pig.

“The anatomy in the different organisms show the different characteristics within the animal kingdom and in the phylum, that we have studied,” Anthony said.  “Doing these dissections helps the students to better understand what they are learning.”

While the dissection took place, students got the opportunity to earn background information on the animal and then they got to start to dissect.

Anthony said, “They learn some techniques for doing dissections and they get to explore the different structures within an organism as well as relate that to what they learned in the previous dissections.”

Students learned how the information they learned every day in class applied to the real world.

“Right now we are learning about biology, so looking inside animals which are just like us would definitely help us to better understand what we are learning,” Vidushi Liyanage, seventh grade vocal major, said.

If a student decided they did not want to participate in the dissection, they got to do a virtual version. Yet Anthony said, virtual reality was not the same as the real thing.

According to, “Alternatives cannot compete with the biological surprises of real specimens and the learning opportunities they provide.”

During the dissection, there were many mixed emotions, from excited to scared, but every child whether they just watched or actually participated, learned something from the experience.

“Doing dissections is a great experience,” Liyanage said. “It teaches you a lot so I encourage people to definitely give it a try.”