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    By bertie

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    We do a bug unit that is about 2 weeks long. We raise the butterflies, incorporate songs, poems, storybooks, and videos. We include some centres during that week that you might enjoy trying. One that I like has the kids go on Kid Pix and design the head, thorax and abdomen using the oval tools, and pour in some wonderful paint effects. We print it off and they cut the 3 body parts out and put the bug together. We have tracers for wings (waxed paper or laminating film work great) and they can add different kinds of legs, antennae, and eye stickers. Then they write a free verse poem describing their bug, and name it.

    In small groups they go to the library where the group is helped by the librarian to research info about one assigned bug. They write their reports a bug shape I got from a Mailbox magazine, then come back and share what they've learned with the rest of the class. Over 5 days everyone gets a chance to do this with a different bug, so they can experience investigation and reports.

    Another group is a listening activity, as we have a tape with stories and songs about bug colors and camoflauge. Then they color different bugs on an activity sheet that goes with the tape. A math activity we've adapted includes ladybugs of different colors (lady bugs come in red, yellow and orange), They graph how many of each color were in their container, and then make a pattern with their ladybugs.

    In art we make dragonfly wings on coffee filter paper (with washable markers and know) and of course use butterfly wings to teach symmetry. We create a ladybug out of construction paper, including the underwings out of waxed paper hidden under the wing cases. We glue that ladybug on a big green leaf and add a poem we learned about ladybugs.

    Of course we study metamorphisis (complete and partial). We make models of that process using pasta shapes on green leaves. And we learn about the different mouth parts using a sponge, medicine dropper, straw and pliars as models. I guess you can tell I enjoy this unit.

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