Penguins & Polar Bears February 7, 2010 at 4:14 am

I was working on my laptop computer the other day in the family room. The girls just finished playing and they both decided to pick up a book and started reading. A few moments later, I over-heard Allison commented to Katelyn how she doesn’t like the idea of polar bears chasing and attacking poor penguins.

She’d made similar comments to me in the past, but the general response I usually gave her is how that’s just natural. You know, the circle of life thing… Apparently, that wasn’t a satisfying answer for Allison because she’s repeating same question to her big sister. A few days earlier, we also had watched a PBS nature show where David Attenborough was narrating a piece about polar bears going hunting for beluga whales trapped in the ice. Watching this probably triggered the concern about polar bears going after penguins in Allison’s head.

Then I observed a remarkable sisterly act from Katelyn…

She asked Allison to go to the living room and bring back a globe. We have a wooden medium-sized world globe that sits on a stand. Allison lugged the globe back for her sister. Katelyn put the globe in her lap and asked Allison to sit next to her. She pointed at the top of the globe and explained to Allison that it’s called the Artic and it’s where the polar bears live. She then inverted the globe and pointed to Antartica and explained that’s where the penguins live.

Katelyn went on to explain to Allison how it’d be impossible for polar bears to attack penguins because they live in the opposite sides of the earth. She explained:

The polar bears would have have to swim very far from north to south to get to the penguins!

Allison just said “Oh!” and seemed relieved.

I didn’t say a word– partly because my jaw just dropped. Couldn’t believe what I witnessed; I got a big kick out of what I just saw. Katelyn not only was addressing her little sister’s question but also tried to prove her point with a visual aid! And she did it with the intent of soothing her sister’s “concern” for the penguins.

It didn’t even occur to their ol’ dad that polar bears and penguins live on opposite poles. Smack on the head! No wonder I never ever saw any video footage of polar bears chasing after penguins. Man… my own daughter made me feel dumb. Katelyn did a better job then I did trying to make Allison feels better about polar bears going after penguins. She truly impressed me and made me a proud daddy.

I don’t expect Allison to ask the question again, thanks to her je-je (big sister).

2 Responses to “Penguins & Polar Bears”

  1. here’s a funny picture of penguins messing with a polar bear:
    http://anhonestclimatedebate.files.wordpress.com/2008/10/penguin-polar-bear-symbols.jpg

  2. Cute story! Did you show the picture to Allison and explain that’s why the polar bears chase the penguins? 😉

Leave a Reply