By Robin Sitarski
Group: Junior High and High School students
Body parts in jars (or
pictures if these cannot be obtained):
Whatever else is available
Brief description of
each body part and a few facts on diseases and such
Reading list of medical fiction and non-fiction
Internet question sheet
Schedule the activity
and seek a nearby medical school to provide the necessary body parts
in jars of embalming fluid, hopefully with a student or intern to
accompany and explain them to students.
Develop a reading
list based on medical fiction and non-fiction available in the collection.
Read several of them and prepare to do a booktalk.
Create a sheet for
the kids to look at as they are waiting for the program to begin.
This should contain weird medical facts and mysteries to peak their
interest. Be prepared to touch on some of the information on the
sheet during the program.
Find several appropriate
sites on the Internet dealing with medical mysteries and diseases.
Develop a question sheet with answers that can be found at the selected
sites to be completed at the library or to be passed out as a handout
for further study at home.
if in a school library setting to arrange for their classes to visit
If in a public library
setting, advertise well in advance of the event and send invitations
to local scout troops and other young adult organizations inviting
them to reserve a time for their group to visit.
Have the young adults
pick up a fact sheet as they come in. Request that they sit and
look it over for a few minutes while waiting for the program to
Begin the program
by re-iterating the to the group the topic of the program and by
introducing your guest (if one is present) and thanking the appropriate
institution for loan of their materials (jars or pictures).
Ask the kids to raise
their hands if there was a particular fact on the sheet they were
Call on them one
at a time and elaborate on whichever fact they want to discuss.
This elaboration could be:
a. a booktalk
b. a description of the body part in the jar by the medical student
or yourself, or
c. a reference to the website the information came from.
however many things from the list time will permit, leaving 10 to
15 minutes to spare:
a. thank the students for their participation
b. thank your guest again
c. pass out the Internet question sheets and explain them.
Invite the kids to
come up and have a closer look at the specimens, check out materials
from the booktalk cart/shelf/table and ask questions.
Ask teachers to fill
out evaluation forms of the activity including:
c. interest of students
e. suggestions for future activities
Note number of booktalk
books checked out
Note how many students
come up for a closer look and ask questions
Blostein, Fay. Invitations,
celebrations: ideas and techniques for promoting reading in Junior
and Senior High Schools. Rev. ed. Neal-Schuman, 1993.
Bodart, Joni. Booktalk
3: Booktalking for All Ages and Audiences . New York: H. W. Wilson,
L. and Allen Pace Nilsen. Literature for Today's Young Adults. 5th
ed. HarperCollins, 1996.
Lefstein, Leah M.
and Joan Lipsitz. 3:00 to 6:00: Programs for Young Adolescents .
2nd ed. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina, Center for Early
I read many of the activities and chapters in these books, I did not
quote or cite them in my paper. From my reading, I got ideas on style
and things of that nature that cannot be directly acknowledged.
This page last updated May 10, 2001
© 2001 Daphne Jorgensen. All Rights Reserved.