Sheep dissections teach brain structure

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Photo by Bess Tiller and Lauren Litsinger

Morgan Zinkhan ('18) examines one of the sheep brains in Anatomy. She made incisions in the brain to expose the inside.

Lauren Litsinger, Reporter

Each year Anatomy and Physiology dissects a variety of different animals from rats to parts of a chicken.

Students are learning about the many parts of the brain, so a sheep brain dissection was chosen so the students could see an up close visual of what they are really learning about.

“We do these dissections so we can figure out the structure and the functions of each part of the brain.” McKenna May (’18) said.

Sophomores, juniors, and seniors can all take the Anatomy course, but freshman do not have the class as an option.

Evan Barnard (’20) said, “Anatomy doesn’t sound interesting, so even hearing about the dissections won’t make me want to take it.”

During each dissection the students separate each part of the brain. On a worksheet that is sectioned and labeled, the parts are identified and categorized.

Photo by Bess Tiller and Lauren Litsinger
Katrina Villanueva (’18), Lila Carroll (’18), and Amanda Harris (’18) work on dissecting their brain together. They doccumented their tasks to put into a presentation for the class.

Throughout the year, the classes will do many more experiments that are hands on. Other dissections like the sheep brain will be done, including an entire rat and a chicken wing.

“I really enjoy this class, although these dissections are kind of gross to look at,” said Sofie Benson (’18). They are really helpful for my learning experience in Anatomy.”

Photo by Bess Tiller and Lauren Litsinger
Identifying which part he should cut into, Wes Porter (20’17) gets hands-on with a sheep brain. “This project was gross for my group because my brain had brain destruction, so it was discolored and mushy,” he said.