“What’s this?” he asked, curious but not concerned.
“Oh wow!” Exclaimed Virginia as she let out her signature coyote howl.
We were all learning about the importance of this howl, the musical tones that signaled that it was time to gather together for some important sharing. Slowly the other learners pulled their attention away from their individual curiosities. Like great blue herons they began wading through the pond muck to where Virginia waited patiently for them to gather. With ears perked and eyes keen, they shifted their gaze to settle on the small black spot on their friend’s leg.
“Does anyone know what this is?” asked Virginia.
“It looks like a worm” said one learner.
“Is it moving? What’s it doing?” asked another.
In a calm and caring voice Virginia explained that it was a leech. She told them that leeches were harmless and that, like mosquitoes
, they attach to us to nourish themselves with our blood. Everyone gathered a little bit closer to get a good look.
“Want to see how we get them off?” Asked Virginia and with a swift flick of a stick, the leech was removed. Soon everyone was excitedly checking their legs and feet.
“Today we learned a bit about what leeches do, we also learned that there are leeches in this pond. If you don’t want a leech on you then you can stay on the edge. If you don’t mind the leeches you can continue to explore up to your knees in the water”.
And with that, the learners resumed their journeys down their pathways of curiosity.
Written by educator Tara Beck