Friday, May 22, 2009

Xx Fox

Today we finished our Xx Fox unit.

We learned that foxes are the smallest members of the dog family, but they are actually closer in size to a large cat. They are easily recognized by their bushy tails, which help keep them warm when they are laying down, and their large ears, which give them an excellent sense of hearing. We also learned that a female fox is called a vixen and a baby fox is called a kit. Vixens usually give birth to four or five kits in the spring, and the kits are deaf and blind when they are born. I was curious to know if foxes have really earned their reputation for being so sneaky, and I discovered that, indeed, they have. They actively seek out their prey, which are usually small animals such as rabbits, squirrels, or mice; and sometimes the only reason they hunt them is just to play with them for a while before letting them go. And the old story about a fox raiding a chicken coop? Yep, turns out that really does happen!

One of our projects this week was to compare foxes and dogs. Hannah told me characteristics that were unique about each animal, as well as some that they shared, and I charted them on a Venn diagram.

The best part of this unit was our Bible lesson. Our special words to remember this week were "God's Word makes me wiser than my enemies."

Our reading selections made our Bible lesson so much richer this week! During the course of our unit, we read four fiction books about foxes. In two of these books (Aesop's The Fox and the Crow and Paul Galdone's The Gingerbread Boy), an unsuspecting victim is outsmarted by a fox. However, in the other two books (Pat Hutchins' Rosie's Walk and Patricia McKissack's Flossie and the Fox), the fox's best efforts to outsmart the unsuspecting party fall short.

Our Bible passages were Proverbs 26:24-25 ("Those who hate you may try to fool you with their words, but in their minds they are planning evil. People's words may be kind, but don't believe them, because their minds are full of evil thoughts.") and Psalm 119:98 ("Your commands make me wiser than my enemies, for they are ever with me."). Because of the books we had read, Hannah was able to understand that some people can come up with very sneaky plans to trick us—even trying to trick us into believing something about God that isn't true. On the flip side, however, she also saw that you can be victorious over a sneaky plan—and for a believer, that means knowing God's Word so well that we don't easily believe a lie.

I especially love the Psalm passage from this week's Bible lesson. I love that wisdom doesn't come from our ability to figure things out, but rather from the commands God has given us. All it takes is our willingness to fill our mind with His Word and do what it says. This is what I desire most for my girls: that they will walk in wisdom—the true wisdom that comes from the Lord, not the false wisdom of the world—all the days of their life.

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