In the last two weeks I took over some lessons in Babelis, and with the First Certificate students we read something about feral children in their First Certificate text book. I enjoyed the reading a lot, because first, personally speaking I found it astonishing, and second, I didn’t know much about the topic either.
For those of you who are wondering what a feral child is, keep reading and then watch the first video I’ve posted in this blog entry. It is about 10 disturbing cases of feral children (subtitled in English, so it’ll be understandable by students of all levels in Babelis).
A feral child, also called wild child, is a human child who has been terribly neglected and/or abandoned at an early age. They have been isolated from human contact, therefore they lack social skills, have little or no experience at all of human behaviour and social rules and, specifically, cannot speak human language. Some of them have been confined by people, namely their own parents and family. Some of these feral children have been reported to have been raised by animals after their abandonment by their own parents or after running away from their homes.
The four stories we read in the FCE groups were really striking, because I found the possiblility that a wild animal fostered a child highly unlikely. In the text there were four cases: a boy raised by monkeys, another raised by gazelles, a third child raised by leopards and the last one brought up by dogs. Among all of them I find the monkey boy story more believable, since monkeys are regarded as our closest relative. The story about the leopard child, however, got me puzzled. I couldn’t believe a wild animal, a carnivore for that matter, like a leopard could have come across a vulnerable human being and raise them as one of their own.
Now, after watching this second video of a leopard killing a baboon to find out later that it had a newborn stuck to its mother’s fur, I started to understand that maybe, sometimes, nature shows us that protective animal instincts are stronger than the destructive ones.
Video 1: ***IMPORTANT: IT MAY NOT BE FOR CHILDREN OF YOUNG AGE! (some cruel stories of abandoned and abused children are told)***