Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Bug Week: Day 1, Butterflies!

This week since it's officially Spring we are having a little bit of fun and putting off some of our regular lesson plans to learn about bugs.  The joys of 'homeschooling' your little ones is just to get them in the habit of learning.  My eldest requests to do school every day and while I try to give her what she wants I know she is still young so we just do 'school' more as a fun learning time. No pressure, no rush, if she wants to be done we're done, lots of focus on nature and God's creation and crafts.

Every kid loves to learn about bugs.  Creepy things that make you both cringe with fear sometimes also brings a very good amount of curiosity.  And that's exactly what we're trying to harness in teaching at home: feeding ones curiosity with knowledge.  "You want to know why a bee likes flowers, let's find out." Exploring together God's creation is one of my greatest joys.

We recently found a Green Anoli lizard in our front yard and he has become our new pet.  It has also provided us a great opportunity to learn about lizards. What do they eat? Why is this lizard's nickname the American Chameleon? etc. Its' been a lot of fun learning with my girls and we find out more about our pet lizard Argh. Umm...yes, that's our lizards name: Argh! We couldn't decide on a name but everytime our youngest came up to the lizard she would growl that way so we just decided to name him Argh. (Although, in writing it is sounds more like a pirate than a growl, ha!)

So, back to bugs. Today we learned about butterflies. We read Angelina and the Butterfly, which is a cute story if your Angelina fans, which we are!  Angelina catches a hurt butterfly and through a series of events learns that butterflies need to be free to be happy.  It's a cute read.

We also made some Scratch Butterfly Ornaments that the girls absolutely loved! They are black paper ornaments in the shape of a butterfly and you simply use a wooden dowel to scratch off the black to reveal a wonderful design underneath.  We tried to focus on how butterflies are symmetrical and what they means. Although the girls just wanted to scratch their entire butterfly to see the pretty colors, so weren't too focused on that. I love these scratch ornaments and we do them each Spring (they come with like two dozen!).  I like them mostly because they are so easy for even my little one and all the kids love it.  Kara says, "It's like magic."

After our ornaments we make some Butterfly Bites for a snack.
All you need is:
-Peanut Butter (or cheese spread)

Put it together like ants on a log except add the pretzels as wings.  Super easy and lots of fun.

Lastly, I had saved a fun book about bugs for the end.  It's called One to Ten...and Back Again- An Amazing Pull-The-Ribbon Book. I got this book when I used to teach and we had a scholastic book fair.  It was so cool I just had to have it. I hadn't seen anything like it, nor have I since then.  It's a book about a single bee who finds a perfect flower to rest on, when with each page turn different bugs keep being added to his resting spot. Each page turn a ribbon pulls through and shows some bugs on it, then when you get to the end you flip the book upside down and watch as each page turn the ribbons disappear as you count back down to the single bee. The girls love reading this book and watching me slowly open the page so they can see the ribbon being pulled open. I can't believe it's available for so cheap now on Amazon. If you haven't seen it check it out here. It's totally a keeper for the home library!

Well, thanks for following our first day of bug adventures and I hope you will look back to see what other bugs we'll explore!

God Bless and Happy Bug Exploring!
Heather Joy

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