Check out several non-fiction books from the library so children can look through the real photos of insects (some familiar, some not).
Here is the beehive
Here is the beehive (show fist)
Where are the bees?
Hidden away where nobody sees.
Watch as they come out of their hive-
1, 2, 3, 4, 5 (show fingers)
They’re alive! Bzzzzzzzz (Wiggle fingers)
DRIED BEAN LADYBUGS
Materials needed: Dried red beans, permanent markers, empty egg carton(s)
Use the permanent markers to add dots so it resembles a ladybug. Label each container of an egg carton with numbers 1-12. Children must match the correct number of ladybugs to the number in each of the egg carton cups.
Extension for older children: Label the egg cartons with larger numbers.
COUNTING NUMBER LADYBUGS
Create ladybugs out of construction paper or foam plates. Label the wings with different amounts of “spots.” On the body of the ladybug, under the wings, write the numeral that corresponds to the number of spots on the ladybug’s wings. For this activity, children choose a ladybug and count the number of spots. Then they open the wings to see if they counted correctly by self-checking their guess with the numeral(s) on the ladybug’s body. You can either have children add up ALL of the spots and have that number written on the body of the ladybug, under the wings or you can create like the sample photo and have different numbers on and under each wing.
Extension for older children: Laminate a set of ladybugs, with the wings closed children count the dots and write the number of dots on the left side of the ladybug’s wings. They can then open the wings to self-check their number guess and see if they were correct.
EGG CARTON INSECTS
Materials needed: Empty egg cartons, pipe cleaners, paint, wiggle eyes, glue, scissors.
Cut the empty egg cartons into smaller sections (1, 3, or 6 sections are suggested). Paint the backside of the egg carton any desired “bug” color. When dry, use pipe cleaners cut into small pieces to punch through the egg carton to use as antenna’s or legs, glue on wiggle eyes, and add any other collage materials that are desired.
BUG IN A RUG
Kids can pretend to be insects as they “hide” in (or under) a large piece of fabric (also referred to as a rug) to work on rhyming words! This game is spin off of the Who’s Missing Game many people are familiar with. One child steps out in the hall (or turns around) so they can’t see any of the other children. One child from the remaining group of children hides in the rug. Have the child who stepped out of the room return as the class chants: Bug in the rug, bug in the rug. Who is that bug in the rug?
The child has to try to figure out who is hiding in/under the rug by observing who is missing from the group.
Our preschoolers love learning about ladybugs and insects! We hope YOURS enjoy the suggestions, too!