Grade: Elementary
Subject: other

#2094. We're Going Buggy: A unit of ideas!

other, level: Elementary
Posted Tue Jan 2 13:20:25 PST 2001 by Jill/K/OK (thetulsateacher@yahoo.com).
Kendall-Whittier Elementary, Tulsa, OK
Concepts Taught: Bugs and Insects

Learning Centers

Computer Center
?How many bugs in a box?? This computer game is based on the popular book by David A. Carter. It includes a read along story as well as games that highlight counting and number recognition skills. It is available to check out from the Tulsa City-County Library System.

Build A Bug: Using the paint program (under Accessories in Windows) the child uses the circle function to draw three circles for the body, and then draws 6 legs.

?Miss Spider?s Tea Party? This computer game can be purchased through Scholastic or Troll Book Orders.

?The Magic School Bus Explores Bugs? This computer game can be purchased through Scholastic Book Orders.

Drama Center
Going on a picnic: Have a picnic in the drama/pretend center! Ideas of materials include a picnic basket, plastic utensils, paper or plastic plates, plastic or paper cups, pretend food, napkins, and a blanket. Invite parents to send picnic supplies they have leftover. Don?t forget to bring the bugs! (plastic, of course)

Camping: Go camping in the drama/pretend center! Ideas of materials include: a tent, binoculars, sleeping bag, campfire, pots-pans, pretend food, backpack, and plastic bugs.

Butterfly Wings: Dress-up and Fly! These can be purchased at Dollar Tree by Target and through Oriental Trading Company.

Insect Puppets and Finger Puppets: Can be purchased through an educational supply store. Plastic finger puppets can be purchased through Oriental Trading Company.

Math Center
Ladybug Math: Cut two ladybug shapes out of red construction paper. Cut 30 dots out of black construction paper. Set out the shapes, dots, and two dice. Have first child roll one of the dice. Invite her to count the dots on the die and place the matching number of dots on her ladybug. Now other child rolls the die, counts dot, and places matching number on his ladybug. Continue to take turns until all dots are gone.

Ladybug Math #2: Cut ladybug shapes out of red felt. Put on different numbers of sticker dots to represent their black dots. Make matching cards with ladybugs drawn on them with the same number of dots on them too.

Ladybug Math #3: Cut ladybugs out of construction paper. Put on different numbers of black dots. Put a piece of Velcro on each ladybug. Draw a number on a circle and put a piece of Velcro on the back. Match the number of dots to the correct numeral.

Do you like honey? Invite children to use a popsicle stick to taste honey. Make a ?Yes/No? chart to graph if the children like honey.

Graph plastic bugs: Find plastic bugs around the room (a bug hunt), and then graph the different kinds.

Bug Match: Use a plastic coke bottle and two exactly the same sets of plastic insects. Put one set of the bugs into the empty bottle and fill it partially up with sand. Glue the other set onto cards. The children turn the bottle until they find each of the matching insects. The bugs on the cards help the children see which ones they still need to find.

Bug Memory: Use real or drawn picture of bugs to play memory. Make a copy of each bug and put onto a card. Laminate. Have children spread sets facedown. Play the game like memory (concentration) until they have matched all pairs of cards.

Itsy bitsy spider: Get a real metal waterspout (down spout) from a home improvement store. Make ?itsy bitsy spiders? out of small wooden chips and pipe cleaners. Glue 8 pipe cleaner legs onto the wooden chips. Add eyes. Don?t forget the magnet on the back. Let the children put several spiders on the waterspout. Encourage them to count how many spiders are on the spout.

Insect Magnets: Sort them according to color or kind and/or match the number of them to number magnets.

Bug Stickers: Make a matching game.

Bee Stripes: Draw/copy bees on cards with different numbers of stripes. Match the ones that are the same.

Ant Nests: Place raisins or black beans in muffin tin with numbers written on the bottom of each cup in the tin.

Bug File Folder Matching Game: Draw a tree on a file folder. Cut out leaves. Put stickers of insects on leaves and glue on tree on file folder. Make another set of insects on leaves to match to the ones on the tree.

Eric Carle?s The Very Hungry Caterpillar Game: Match colors and shapes to create a beautiful butterfly! This game is by Martine Redman and Briarpatch Inc.

Bug Dominoes:

Science Center
Bugs as pets: Bugs make good pets. They don?t require much space and they are easy to care for. Here are a few feeding tips:
Ants: drops of honey of bits of raw meat, apples, and banana
Grasshoppers: fruits and vegetables
Praying mantis: fruit flies
Ladybugs and beetles: fruit and boiled potatoes
Crickets: raw vegetables, fruit, dog biscuits, and crackers
Bees and butterflies: should be set free to find flower nectar!
All insects need water. Place a few drops of water on a leaf, inside the cage, daily.

Bug-eyed: The Tulsa Zoo sells the plastic tubes with a multifaceted lens on one end that shows how a bug sees.

Worm tunnels: Fill a large resealable plastic bag with dirt, water, and a plastic worm. Reinforce the seal with tape. Invite the children to work with the bag, making tunnels for the worm. A source for commercially made worm tunnels is Lakeshore.

Wonderboard Magnet Set-Build A Bug: Create your own bugs with magnet parts! This can be purchased at Appletree.

Moving Butterfly: Can be purchased at the Tulsa Zoo.

Beehive: Use toilet paper tubes wrapped in yellow paper or painted yellow and stack on one another. You can also use a yellow plastic dish coaster (can be purchased at What A Deal).

Sensory Table
Bug Hunt: Use the Bug Match (see Math Center) matching game in the sensory table. Put one set of bugs in sand, plastic grass, etc. in the sensory table. Glue the other set onto cards. Invite the children record the number of each bug found.

Itsy Bitsy Downspout: Transform two pieces of PVC pipe- a one-foot-length and a corner piece- into a downspout. Put the downspout and water in the sensory table. Put in cups for pouring and encourage children to watch what happens. Add plastic spiders for added fun!

Dirt and Worms: You can put real dirt with live worms in the sensory table. Be sure to talk to the children about being gentle when handling the worms.

Writing Center
What?s the buzz? Bulletin board: Cut out several small bees. Write each child?s name on a bee. Cut out several caption balloons out of post-it notes. Let children write or dictate something for their bee to say. Encourage children to find their name and hang their caption above it.

What?s the buzz? Dry erase sheet: Draw a beehive onto yellow construction paper and laminate. Put in writing center with dry erase markers.

Ladybug ?What bugs you?? After reading The Very Grouchy Ladybug, invite children to draw ?what bugs you?. Invite child to write or dictate what they drew. As an extension, you could put this on ladybug shaped paper.

?Bees and Me Book? by Mailbox. A copy is included.

Bug Stencils


Art Projects

Tissue Butterflies: Cut large butterfly pattern out of paper. Cover with wax paper. Paint tissue squares onto wax paper with liquid starch. Follow the outline of the butterfly. Fill in completely. Make two or three layers of tissue paper. Let dry overnight. Carefully peel away the wax paper. You will have a beautiful tissue butterfly!

Insect Prints: Using a washable stamp pad or washable markers, color students thumb. Have student print three times onto paper (representing the three segments). Invite children to decorate with 6 legs, antennas, and wings to make a real insect! You can also use your thumb or finger to make bees!

Circle Caterpillars: Pour different colors of paints into separate shallow dishes. Provide a variety of circular items for students to print with. Items can include corks, film canisters, lids, plastic spools, and bottle tops. Direct child to use the objects to print caterpillars onto paper. When dry, invite child to draw eyes, legs, antennae, and a background. Ask child, how many circles long is your caterpillar? How many circles are blue? Yellow? Etc.

Dragonfly Clothespin: For the wings, fold a sheet of paper in half. Lay the top of a table knife flat on the paper. Trace around the knife onto the paper. Move the knife and trace it again right next to the first drawing. Cut out the wings, keeping them attached. Decorate the clothespin any way you like. Place the wings, folded side down, in the slit of the clothespin. Press wings open. Tape or glue your wings onto the clothespin.

Heart Butterfly: Out of construction paper, cut out 2 bigger hearts and 2 smaller hearts. Put the 2 smaller hearts on top of the bigger hearts. Staple all four together at the points of the hearts. Put a pipe cleaner in the middle (at the points of the hearts) to represent the body.

Butterfly Blob Painting: Fold a piece of paper in half and open it back up. Put 2-4 small blobs of paint near the fold (middle) of the paper. Fold your paper again and squish the paint together. Open it back up and add eyes and an antenna.

Caterpillar Necklace: Cut circles out of colored paper. Poke holes in the middle of the circles. Use several circles and cut straw pieces or pasta to make the body of your caterpillar. String all of these onto yarn, string, ribbon, etc?

Scooter Bug: Use a styrofoam container/box and cut the bottom out. Decorate your box with pipe cleaners as legs and antennae. Use markers or paper or anything else you can find. Use a lemon or orange underneath to make your bug move.

Worm Tracks: Put strings of yarn in paint to make tracks on your paper.

Confetti Fly: (Jill??)

Grasshopper Egg Carton: Use an egg carton to cut a grasshopper. Use pipe cleaners for the legs and antennae. Put a bouncy ball in on the underside of the grasshopper to help it bounce.

Marble Painting Spider Web: (Jill??)

Spider Web: Cut squares out of cardboard and cut slits around all edges. Use white yarn or string to wrap around the cardboard through the slits.

Insect Stamps: Stamp on your paper to make various designs and/or patterns. These can be purchased through Oriental Trading Company.

Bean Bees: You can spray paint white lima beans yellow to make bees.

Rock Insects: You can paint rocks to make insects. For example, you can paint a rock red to make a ladybug and then color or paint on black dots.

Emerging Butterflies: Make a butterfly out of tissue paper, construction paper, or etc?. Glue it on the end of a craft stick. Use a toilet paper tube to make it come out of, this is its cocoon.

Butterfly Pin: Use a pipe cleaner with 4 tie ends glued on it or wrapped around it. Glue a pin on the back. This is good for Father?s Day!

Fabric Butterfly: Use any piece(s) of fabric and wrap a pipe cleaner around it.

Butterfly sock: Use an old sock and 4 shoulder pads. Use hot glue to glue the shoulder pads onto the sock to make the wings of the butterfly.

Cooking Activities

Luscious Ladybug Snacks
(See attached recipe)

Butterfly Toast: Slice a piece of toast in half diagonally. Spread jelly or color creme cheese on both pieces of toast, top with colorful round cereal pieces. Arrange the toast like wings around an oval shaped cookie. Add licorice antennae and two cereal pieces as eyes.

Worm Pretzels: Roll long thin pieces of dough.

Circle Time Activities:

Go on a bug hunt: Hide paper or plastic bugs around the room or in the hallways and invite the students to go on a bug hunt. Don?t forget you magnifying glasses and notebook!

Bugwatcher glasses: Buy inexpensive children?s sunglasses, take the lenses out, and hot glue plastic insects around the frames! Use at group time for helper to wear, keep at centers, or make a pair for each student to remember when the bug unit!

Bugwatcher glasses #2: Cut 2 ? circles from craft foam. Cut 1 ? circles out of the center, leaving a rim. Join the circles together by twisting a pipe cleaner. Punch a pipe cleaner stem through the outer edge, making the ?legs? of the glasses. Glue or attach plastic or chenille bugs. Label the glasses ?Bug Eyes? or ?Bug Watchers?.

Bugwatcher glasses #3: Use an egg carton and pipe cleaners. Decorate as you like.

Bugwatcher glasses #4: Use tennis ball holders and tape them together.

Buzz! Buzz! Who has the honey? Adapt the Doggy, doggy, where?s your bone? game to the bug unit. Select one child to be the queen/king bee. Have that child come to the middle of the circle and close his eyes. Secretly give another child a small ?jar of honey? (we use one of the blocks from the block center). Invite the bee to open his eyes by chanting, ?Buzz! Buzz! Who has the honey?? Have all children make a humming noise, except for the child that has the honey. This child will buzz. Have the children continue to hum and buzz until the queen/king bee finds the honey. This child will now be the queen/king bee!

What is an insect? Get photos of real insects. Write the following on chart paper:
______ legs ______ body parts

Divide the students into small groups and invite them to fill in the blank for each insect photo. When all of the groups are finished compare data and develop a theory that all insects have 6 legs and three body parts. Then show a giant rubber spider and use the theory to prove that a spider is not an insect.

Firefly counting: Collect several flashlights with easy on/off switches. Using masking tape, place a numeral on the end of the flashlight. Darken the room. Each time that you say a numeral, encourage the child with that numeral to flash his/ her flashlight.

My dog has fleas: Cover an oatmeal container with fake fur. Decorate with squiggly eyes and felt to look like a dog. Use pom pom balls as ?fleas?. Children try to toss the fleas into the container.

Spiderweb: Have the children sit in a circle. Roll a ball of yarn back and forth to different children. This will create a ?spiderweb? in the middle as long as everyone holds on to his or her piece.

Bug Flashlight: (Jill??)

Music and Movement Activities

Popular Songs: ?The Ants Go Marching?, ?I?m bringing home a baby bumblebee?,
?Itsy Bitsy Spider?

?Head, thorax, abdomen? (tune of Head and Shoulders, Knees and Toes)
Head, thorax, abdomen, abdomen
Head, thorax, abdomen, abdomen
Head and thorax and an abdomen
Head, thorax, abdomen, abdomen

?I like bugs!? (tune of Three Blind Mice)
I like bugs, I like bugs.
Every kind, every kind.
I like bugs that are green and small.
I like bugs that climb so tall,
I like bugs, yes I like them all.
Oh, I like bugs.

Firefly Flashlight Fun: Give children a flashlight and allow them to ?fly? around the room.

Butterfly flight: For each child, cut a slit along the length of two cardboard paper towel rolls. Tape colorful crepe paper streamers to the rolls as shown. Slightly open each roll and put it on the child?s arm. Give each child a headband with pipe cleaner antennae. Invite the child to move around the room like a butterfly.

Butterfly flight #2: Give children scarves to dance around with to music.

Flower game: Arrange colorful flower cutouts on the floor. With butterfly wings on, invite your child to respond to the following:
Butterfly, butterfly, fly away.
Butterfly, butterfly, don?t delay.
Butterfly, butterfly, fly so high.
Butterfly, butterfly, touch the sky.
Butterfly, butterfly, turn around.
Butterfly, butterfly, touch the ground.
Butterfly, butterfly, quick as a wink.
Find a (color) flower and stop to drink.

Flight of the Bumblebees: Play musical bees! Cut large flower shapes from colorful vinyl, craft foam, or laminated construction paper. Randomly place flower shapes on the ground in an open space. As you play a recording of "The Flight of the Bumblebee," encourage youngsters to buzz around in the open space. When the music stops, have each child find a flower to land on. For a variation, ask children to land on a different flower each time or to land only on specific colors of flowers.

(((Jill- I have some more fingerplays/chants, we may just wait to see if we just want to write them on chart paper or add them to this.)))


Children?s Books


The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
The Grouchy Ladybug by Eric Carle
The Very Busy Spider by Eric Carle
The Honey Bee and the Robber by Eric Carle
The Very Clumsy Click Beetle by Eric Carle
The Very Quiet Cricket by Eric Carle
The Very Lonely Firefly by Eric Carle
The Magic School Bus: In a Bee Hive by Joanna Cole
Bugs, Bugs, Bugs by Bob Barner
Bugs by Nancy Winslow Parker and Joan Richards Wright
More Bugs in a Box by David Carter
The Big Bug Search by Caroline Young
There?s a Cricket in the Library by 5th grade students of McKee Elementary
Creepy Crawlies A to Z by Louisa Ainsworth
Old Black Fly by James Aylesworth
Inch by Inch by Leo Lionni
Butterfly by Susan Canizares
How Spider Stopped the Litterbugs by Robert Kraus
How Spider Saved the Day by Robert Kraus