Flour Babies Teach Responsibility

By: Heather Lavers
Roncalli Central High School
Port Saunders, NF

Start of with a seven pound sack of flour, add doll arms, legs, a head and clothes. What do you get? Babies, responsibility, accountability: all these can be summed up in two words, family living. For 27 level one, two and three students, this is a reality. They are part of the Family Living 2000 class at Roncalli Central High in Port Saunders, NF.


They were paired up as married couples and went through the process of marriage and finally flour babies. Some girls left over became single mothers. All the babies have a certain medical condition, such as Spina Bifida, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Cerebral Palsy which the parents' researched and presented to the class. View a video presentation of the class' work.

When asked what he thought about the project Morgan Hynes, a level three student at Roncalli High said, "It was really an eye opening experience. I never realized before how hard it was to care for a baby, we had to carry our flour babies around and account for them 24 hours of every day."

As well as research together, the married couples had to learn how to compromise their schedules to look after their child. They had to figure out who would be responsible for it for the different evenings and weekends outside of school. Lacey House, a level three student at Roncalli remarked, "As being just a family living class, the responsibilities and the dedication of taking the baby home each night was worked out fine between myself and my husband because we both loved our baby very much". Josh Clowe also a level three student at Roncalli agrees by saying, "It wasn't very difficult to figure out a schedule that worked for both of us. If one person was busy then the other would gladly take our baby ".

Donald Tulk, family living instructor responded, "Overall, I think the project was a success. There was a remarkable bond that formed between the students and their children. The students treated their children for the most part with care and respect."

When asked about family life most family living students will now say that they realize now how much time and energy it takes to keep a family together. Dawn Marie Patey, a level two student said, "Now that I know what is required in having a family, I know I'll enjoy my teenage years a lot more because right now I just want to have fun."