Friday, May 11, 2012

Nonsense Day at Edinburgh Zoo

Nonsense Day at Edinburgh Zoo

Sunday 12th May, 11am-3.30pm

Come along to Edinburgh Zoo this weekend and join us in celebrating the works of Edward Lear on the 200th anniversary of his birth.
Our Education Department has a whole host of suitably nonsense activities and events planned to mark this special occasion. Most famous for his books of nonsense and his world famous poem of ‘The Owl and the Pussycat’, Lear was also a talented zoological artist, and his drawings of parrots are thought to be among some of the best in the world.
Edinburgh Zoo is home to a few of the animals from his well-known poem ‘The Owl and the Pussycat’ including Kune Kune pigs and several owls. So keep your eyes peeled for Elmo our white-faced scops owl as he is usually seen out and about as one of our encounter animals, or head up to the Hilltop Arena to catch a glimpse of our trio of Kune Kune pigs!
Take to the Park and get exploring with our special Nonsense Trail based on the nonsense alphabet, or why not try your hand at Nonsense Botany, looking back at some of Edward Lear’s nonsense plant names so get your thinking caps on and see what nonsense names you can think of! There will also be the opportunity to learn all about Lear himself and his other works and you’ll have the chance to create your very own poem about some of the invertebrates on show.
Sandie Robb, Senior Education Officer at Edinburgh Zoo, said:
“This year sees the bicentenary of Edward Lear’s birthday, and we’re honouring the nonsense author at Edinburgh Zoo by running lots of fun and educational activities…with a nonsense twist of course!
“Originally a zoological artist he then went onto write his famous books of nonsense, and then his most well-known piece of work, ‘The Owl and the Pussycat’.
“It’s a great opportunity to educate children about Edward Lear and his work through our nonsense themed events and activities, including our nonsense trail which will have the children and maybe even a few parents exploring the Park. Learning as they go along about Lear’s nonsense alphabet and discovering clues as to where the trail could lead!
“We always try to deliver education in way that is fun and interesting for the children and offers them something different. They’ll have the chance to get up, close and personal with some of our creepy crawlies, with a chance to write their very own creepy crawly nonsense poem, the best budding poet will even win a special prize”.
Normal Zoo admission applies.

The Owl and the Pussy-cat went to sea
In a beautiful pea green boat,
They took some honey, and plenty of money,
Wrapped up in a five pound note.
The Owl looked up to the stars above,
And sang to a small guitar,
'O lovely Pussy! O Pussy my love,
What a beautiful Pussy you are,
You are,
You are!
What a beautiful Pussy you are!'

Pussy said to the Owl, 'You elegant fowl!
How charmingly sweet you sing!
O let us be married! too long we have tarried:
But what shall we do for a ring?'
They sailed away, for a year and a day,
To the land where the Bong-tree grows
And there in a wood a Piggy-wig stood
With a ring at the end of his nose,
His nose,
His nose,
With a ring at the end of his nose.

'Dear pig, are you willing to sell for one shilling
Your ring?' Said the Piggy, 'I will.'
So they took it away, and were married next day
By the Turkey who lives on the hill.
They dined on mince, and slices of quince,
Which they ate with a runcible spoon;
And hand in hand, on the edge of the sand,
They danced by the light of the moon,
The moon,
The moon,
They danced by the light of the moon.
Did you know they had children?

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