After learning about cardiac anatomy on Wednesday, students capped off the week with a practical dissection in the Oxford Laboratories. Lambs’ hearts were secured from the local butcher, and each pair of students was presented with their very own to examine and practice their skills on.
Teachers Amy and Hernal gave an introduction to the session, in which they laid out ground rules for treating the heart carefully and with respect. They then demonstrated how to go about the process of dissection properly and with minimal mess. Students were transfixed when they were called to step up to their own specimens before them on the workbench; looking straight down on the top of the heart, they were able to pick out the two main veins―the vena cava and pulmonary veins―and the arteries (the aorta and coronary arteries).
A particularly pleasing point of the session for some was feeling for themselves how the inner workings of the heart fit together―certain students were thrilled to put their fingers through the pulmonary artery and see it emerge, green-gloved, by way of the vena cava.