No worries…we planned for these wriggly insects to play on the desks this week!
Students have been investigating mealworms, making observations about their appearance and behavior, and taking notes. They helped create the habitat to keep our mealworms in when we are not in the classroom or using them during science by considering the basic needs of living creatures. Mealworms were provided with space (a small plastic cylinder), food (bran), water (moisture from a cube of sweet potato), and air (holes poked in the lid of the container).
Students are already noticing changes and differences between the mealworms. Each student has two mealworms and share a cylinder habitat with another student (for a total of four mealworms per cylinder). Some jumped in right away gently holding the mealworms. We discussed the responsibility we have in working with live insects. Students have done a good job handling them with respect for nature. Others took time to get more comfortable with these insects and were very proud to announce when they held one for the first time!
Some of our class observations/questions included:
- “Why are some different colors?”
- “One shed its skin!”
- “What do the white ones mean?”
- “Are those newborn babies?”
- “One got longer, but is still skinny.”
- “They only have legs in the front.”
Students will find out more through discovery learning. Although I have the ending of this activity laminated next to my desk and ready to add to our science board, I look forward to seeing their reactions as the mealworms go through their life cycle! Not many of those changes have gone unnoticed by our class. They are full of questions and new ways to explore their insects: we have a classroom of curious 1st grade scientists!
If you would like to help in future investigations, one way is to be on the lookout for Mulberry Trees in your area. Click here to read more. Let us know if you are able to help out!
If you would like an extra follow-up activity to do with your child this weekend, click here for a writing/drawing activity reviewing the observations they have been making.
Science Word Bank