Our friend brought a special surprise to school last week: dead dragonflies. He and his dad fished them out of his pool, and he was kind enough to share them with us. For the kids the highlight of the dragonfly examination was their smell. Apparently they were sorta stinky. I was more interested in the initiative that our friend took in presenting his dragonflies for peer review. He was very serious and scientific about his findings. He composed his thoughts and delivered his brief speech confidently. I applaud our teachers for encouraging the kids to bring dead bugs, animals and any other interesting bits of nature they find to class. On a recent Saturday morning I got a call from another mother verifying the procedure for dead mouse preservation (the freezer). Her son was very excited about bringing the mouse to show his classmates, and I don’t blame him. There is no learning more experiential than examining an expired creature up close. Especially ones that flit and scurry, pausing only long enough to pique the interest of inquiring minds.