Discovering Insects

Article

Author: Rebecca Scharf

Organization: Iowa State University graduate 2000

Topic: Insects

Grade Level: 1st

Time Frame: 40 minutes

Purpose: The first grader students will gain a better understanding about insects. The first grade students will be able to identify insects. The first grade students will be able to learn the names of the nine most commonly known insects.

Materials:

  • Have You Seen Bugs? By Joanne Oppenheim and Illus. By Ron Broda
  • 20 plastic bugs
  • Oak tag
  • Black Marker
  • “Insects Are Not Icky”

Getting Ready: Prior to class, hide one of the plastic bugs on each student's chair.

Motivate (Engage): Hold up the book Have You Seen Bugs? Discuss the author and illustrator of this book. Ask the students what they think this book might be about.

Activity (Explore): Read the book, asking questions throughout the entire book. What do bugs look like? Discuss with the students that bugs come in all sorts of shapes, sizes, and colors. Discuss what the book was about. Tell the students that today they are going on a bug hunt. Explain that you are going to talk about the bugs that they will find during their bug hunt. Hold up each bug and ask students if they know the name. Go through each bug and see if the students might know the names. The students will know some of the names, but will need some assistance on some of the others. Write the names of the bugs on a piece of oak tag. The names of the bugs that the students will find during their bug hunt are: grasshopper, termite, ladybug, bee, dragonfly, fly, beetle, ant, and praying mantis. Stress to the students that they must be very quiet when they go on their bug hunt, for if they don't the bugs will get scared and hide. Tell the students that they most tip toe when they're searching for their bugs. Explain to the students that each one will find only one bug and their bug will be somewhere around their desk or chair. Remind students to search quietly for their bugs. Explain to the students that when they have found their bug they must return to the carpet area. Tell students that during their search there should be no talking. Also, tell students when they return to the carpet areas their voices need to remain turned off. Remind students that they may only search by their own desk and chair. Tell students that they may now go and search for their bugs.

Safety Tips: No special safety tips.

Concept Discovery (Explanation): Put the large piece of oak tag with the nine names of the bugs on it and put it on the easel. Explain to the students that they are going to chart how many bugs they've hunted. Once all the students have returned to the carpet area, start asking some questions. Ask the students if they remember what this bug is called. Assist them if necessary. Write the name of that bug up on a piece of oak tag and have the students count to see how many students found that bug during their bug search. Ask numerous other questions, making sure you include all the students and their bugs. Once you have all nine bugs listed on the oak tag and found out how many of each bug was found during the bug hunt, go over the chart with the students. Ask them how many grasshoppers did they find, how many ladybugs did they find, how many termites did they find, etc.

Going Further (Extensions): Ask higher order questions, which bug was found the most number of times during the bug hunt, which bug was found the most number of times during the bug hunt, which bug was found the least number of times during the bug hunt, etc.

Closure: Once the students have gone through the chart, explain to the students that they may take their bugs home.

Assessment (Evaluation): My evaluation will be anecdotal. I will be observing the students and writing down my findings in a notebook. I will be looking for it the students are paying attention and following directions. I will be evaluating the students on it they are able to identify insects. Lastly, I will be looking for if the students can name nine of the most commonly known insects.

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