Wednesday, February 8, 2012

The circle of life in mice

Now, you might be guessing, why in God's name would I write such an essay. I would never do such a thing, but my 13-yr-old, lover of all things animal, would. This year has been an interesting one with our homeschooling. I have not stressed as much about what I want them to do or study, but instead have encouraged them (in their English) to write every day and usually write what they want to write. This way they can work on their cursive, punctuation, spelling, grammar and over all how to write a paper. They love it and writing now seems to be easy and not a chore for them. It has been fun for me in the process. I'm amazed (still) at how different my 6 kidletts are and how their interests are so vastly different.

The other day my daughter asked if she could study mice and write a short paper on it, I obliged. Here it is:

A baby mouse is called a pup. Newborn pups, or "pinkies" are almost transparent. Pups are weaned at about 4-5 weeks. Mice can mate at 5 weeks old. Female mice (does) come into heat every 3-5 days. After the buck (male) breeds the doe, extra semen forms a waxy plug in the vagina. The gestation period in the doe lasts 18-22 days.

The doe needs fattier foods such as sunflower seeds during pregnancy. The doe normally gives birth between midnight and four in the morning. A doe's average litter size is 8-12 pups. Does can have anywhere between 1-32 pups.

And there you have it. Isn't that interesting? I never knew...

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