Owen touched the mantis and then we noticed that it was "pooping" so we gave it some space thinking it was hurt or that we were stressing it out. Yeah no, a parasite was emerging just then, so we watched a huge thin black snake??? at the time we had no idea what was happening come out of the back of the mantis and then seemed to strike at us even though we where pretty far away.
So we were all pretty careful and a little scared as the only native speaker we found told us that was it was "was something that will bite".
On to my quandary: I can't help but want to say "that is the reason I keep harping on you to wash your hands". My kids are terrible hand washers for a variety of reasons, but I still have to supervise my seven year old when she washes to make sure she does it.
We live in a tropical climate, it is not out of the realm of possible to think they will get a parasite and it doesn't help that the whole hand washing thing is not done well.
Should I jump on this learning opportunity, or should I save them from the nightmares that I know I will be having???
2) there's only so much, realistically, you'll ever really be able to get them to wash their hands. washing before meals maybe, but not after every grody encounter.
3) I like praying mantises too. but parasites not so much. eew.
SAHM to 6.5yo DS and 4yo DD. PCOS with two early m/cs. Married 8 yrs. Certified birth doula, writer, editor.
Some stuff I like:
I, too, often worry about my kids not washing their hands enough. I am kind of lax in that area, there are so many battles to pick and choose from. But since you live in a tropical area and parasites are a concern, I might harp on hand washing a bit more.
5. You know your kids and whether they're the type to be traumatized forever or just giggle and go wash their hands more readily when you suggest it. "Lets get rid of the baby snakes so they can grow somewhere else!"
I'd ramp up the harping on hand-washing, given the climate and risk of parasites. I don't think they will have nightmares if you don't make it a big deal. "It was really cool that we saw that happen, but you don't want that to get in your body, so wash up!"
(We once watched our neighbor's cat eat a live snake, from the tail to the head...the cat left the head, and the neighbor child brought the head into school for show-and-tell.)
DS, 10/07. Allergies: peanut, egg, wheat. We've added dairy back in. And taken it back out again. It causes sandpaper skin with itchy patches and thrashing during sleep. Due w/ #2 late April, 2012.
I don't see the big deal. And I wouldn't think twice about saying "see guys, that's a parasite comging out of the bug. You can get one too if you're not careful, that's why I tell you to wash your hands after you do something gross."
Very blessed mama to one bouncin' boy (12/07) one who didn't get to stay (6/09), one potty learning, mess making diva(4/10), and one cheerful milk monster. (12/11) Happy partner to the love of my life.
I used to tell our PS teacher: You have to pick your battles and hand washing is one I picked, LOL. I fought about this with my son every day for at least a year. Probably more like three years. It clearly became a battle of wills, but I won. He washes his hands now and I sometimes don't even have to ask. He's about to turn 7.
So, although I initially thought, gross, no way would I remind my kids of that, yeech.....In reality, I'd use it. Yeah, I definitely would.
Did you ever find out what it was?
OTOH, my little brother would've started deliberately rubbing his hands in dirt.
So I'd be cautious both with very squeamish children AND kids who think it's exceptionally cool.
It is kind of cool that it basically takes over it's body and makes it kill itself!
I do think is was a horse hair worm, and seeing it was in a way cool, but the fact that it takes over the insects body really creeps me out. We came home and googled it right after so the kids learned what it was and all that.
I just have some "issues" with a few different crawlies so I have really tried not to make my kids unreasonably afraid of insects that won't actually hurt them. This is why I was wondering if I should make the connection with the hand washing--they just saw a really graphic example of a parasite, but in reality this in one parasite that doesn't affect people so I guess that feels a little dishonest to link the two things?
Thanks for helping me think things through, and I am sorry that I didn't warn you that it was gross Sometimes I think I am the only one that is squeamish.
Mommy to kids
i am all for parasites.
i would not blow this out of proportion and ask your kids to wash their hands based on one native speakers opinion.
as my dd likes to say 'so if we ate a little bit, i'd just be sick a little bit and be ok mooom. i WONT die you know.'