Making a Chicken Mummy: Recipe 2
Making A Chicken Mummy Scientifically,
by Mrs. Armstrong (Madison #1 Middle School, Phoenix, AZ)
one chicken for every 4-6 students
26 oz. salt per group (each week)
1/2 cup spices per group (each week)
Zip-loc freezer strength bags (gallon size)
plastic containers to hold chicken in bag (in case of leakage)
1. Weigh your chicken.
2. Wearing gloves, students will remove entrails from the chicken (Optional: These can be preserved in smaller baggies and put in baby food jars. Later, students can decorate the baby food jars with clay heads, turning them into canopic jars.)
3. At a sink, thoroughly rinse both inside and outside of chicken. Do this until the liquid runs clear.
4. Using paper towels (many will be needed), dry the chicken thoroughly inside and out, especially under the legs and wings. This is critical, since any moisture can create problems with the mummification process.
5. Rub the 1/2 cup of spices all over the chicken (inside and out). Any mixture of sweet-smelling (and cheap) spices will do. The purpose is to mask the odor of the decay which is about to take place.
6. Rub salt over the entire chicken, making sure that every inch is covered (and very dry).
7. Fill the cavity with salt.
8. Place the chicken in a Zip-loc bag. Seal the bag and place in a plastic tub (or bowl) in case the bag begins to leak. (As the process occurs, liquid will drain from the carcass).
9. Once a week for 4 or 5 weeks, open the bag and remove the chicken (be sure to wear gloves!). Weigh the chicken each time and record the weight. The chicken must be re-spiced, re-salted (inside the cavity and out), and replaced in a clean bag.
9. Repeat this process each week until no more liquid accumulates in the bag.
10. When the chicken is done, remove it from the bag. Weigh it one last time. Then wrap it in gauze strips or ripped muslin strips. Decorate with handmade "authentic" Egyptian amulets, medallions, jewels, etc.
11. Create a sarcophagus for the mummy using shoe boxes. Spray box with gravel paint. Decorate with hieroglyphics and pictures of Egyptian gods.
12. Students can bury the sarcophagus (with mummy inside) and dig it up later in the year.
13. Students can keep a journal of the process.
Thank you, Mrs. Armstrong!