Too much

It’s not uncommon for high school students to research the question: How much can I drink before I vomit? Usually they don’t get credit, however. A science teacher in Smithfield, North Carolina is in hot water for asking students to drink huge quantities of milk for a classroom experiment.

It was intended to show the body can handle only so much before a natural reaction occurs and the person vomits.

No kidding.

Participation was voluntary, says the teacher. Of 42 students in two classes who drank the milk, five threw up. An educational experience for all, especially for the teacher, who’s been suspended.

About Joanne


  1. Anyone know how much they drank?

    (I’m about to throw up from drinking 4 cups of un-sweetened milk-free tea on empty stomach. Can I get some sort of credit for that?)

  2. I just posted on the same issue.

  3. Usually, the question of “How much can I drink before I vomit?” isn’t answered until one joins a college fraternity.

  4. “…the body can handle only so much before a natural reaction occurs…”

    Excuse me, but wouldn’t this be biology? How come he can’t stick to orbitals and moles and ions and the periodic table like every other chemistry teacher?

    “Ferguson videotaped the experiment for later analysis, as he does all experiments. A photographer also was there taking pictures for the yearbook.”

    Uh huh.

  5. Walter E. Wallis says:

    Unfortunately, in a world where “Natural” is equated with benign, one natural response to drinking too much of anything is death.

  6. Hopefully none of the kids were lactose intolerant.

  7. Two questions (of many) I don’t know the answer to:
    1.) Could drinking to much milk in the manner the teacher used reasonably result in injury to the students?

    2.) Does this teacher do a good job of educating students?

    Without knowing the answer to the two questions above, I hesitate to be overly critical. I graduated from high school decades ago and the teachers I remember most are the ones who were passionate about their subject and/or were prone to do unusual things. Well, those teachers and Ms. Holt, who was fresh out of college and wore low cut blouses, but that is probably not germane to the present discussion.

  8. Ken Summers says:

    Low cut blouses are germane to every conversation.

  9. Ken Summers says:

    Should have been “discussion” instead of “conversation”. I hate mucking up a line that wasn’t that good to begin with.

  10. Ken,
    Thanks for the laugh.

  11. Quantities: up to 1/2 gallon. (I get nauseous just thinking about that!) Participation was voluntary, so the lactose-intolerant could have declined.