This is our catalog of courses. We will occasionally adjust the course listing to reflect the addition of new courses and the retirement of others. 

Recorded MS
The Cat: Natural History, Artificial Selection, and Anatomy

Join us for this fun 6th- to 8th-grade science course exploring our feline friends! Learn about where domestic cats came from, different cats around the world, common and exotic breeds, and some anatomy and genetics.

Total number of class meetings: 12

Duration of each class: 45 minutes

Prerequisite: None

Suggested grade level: 6th to 8th grade

Suggested credit: One full semester Life Science. For a full year credit, follow with Megafauna.


Let’s study the surprising natural history of the Family Felidae! Cats are hunters, and notoriously difficult to domesticate. So how did we end up with these small predators in our homes? We’ll study big and not-so-big cats from around the world as we try to understand the fearsome and fluffy feline.


Class 1: Introduction: what is a cat? (Anatomy 1)

Class 2: Fossil cats: an evolutionary overview

Class 3: European cats

Class 4: Asian cats

Class 5: South American cats

Class 6: North American cats

Class 7: African cats (Anatomy 2)

Class 8: Island species: small wild cats

Class 9: The domestic cat (Anatomy 3)

Class 10: Common breeds

Class 11: Exotic breeds

Class 12: Recent breeds, and Genetics of color

Materials and Homework

Course Materials: Two books to be purchased: The Big Cats and Their Fossil Relatives by Turner and Anton, ISBN 13: 978-0231102292 (https://amzn.to/3uTNkRg) and Cats: The Breeds, History, and Folklore of the Domestic Cat, ISBN 13: 978-1640308763 (https://amzn.to/3gPe2lN)

Homework: Weekly quizzes, assigned reading. Students are welcome and encouraged to share their photos of felines and tales of tigers.

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