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Lesson Plans


fossil cowskulls........

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Robert E. \ (sheffey)
Sun, 09 Nov 1997 03:28:50 -0700

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Cheri,
I laughed when I read your cowskull story, it bringing back memories of
my own cowskull story. I was living in Virginia and wanted some skulls
and bones for still lifes. I had a "scavenger hunt" giving my students
a list of things I would like to have for the art room which had
different numerical value. Cowskulls were "100". Within the next week I
had been given about 8 cowskulls, all in different states of
decomposition (not as bad as yours....no eyeballs). I took large
buckets and filled them with the skull and bleach water. A horrible
smell developed which seemed to permeate my clothing and skin...I could
never seem to stop smelling it. I began the job of scrubbing each
skull. It snowed and we were off from school but I was in my classroom
scrubbing these skulls. A few I just gave up on and wrapped in plastic
and threw away. Several I managed to clean.
In trying to figure out how to dry them out, I had the grand idea of
turning my kiln on low and placing them inside. I didnt even think
about "bone marrow". A really sickening smell came from the kiln and I
got really sick, nausea and the whole bit. I smelled (at least to
myself) like "cow" for weeks and I didn't eat meat for about 4 months.
Later I painted the skulls with gesso and I have used them for years,
fondly...
Teresa

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