Summer is officially here! The bright sunny days and warm weather sends most of us outside. Whether you are engaging in an outdoor sport, enjoying a day at the pool, or relaxing with a picnic lunch at your favorite park, you have probably encountered one of the most social insects around…the ant. But don’t be bugged by this little intruder, instead, seize the opportunity to teach your little ones about their magnificence using these fun ant activities:
The best way to teach kids about ants is to let them observe their behavior. Ants, like bees, live as part of a colony. Because of this, they move through life with a purpose. Take children on a nature walk in search for ants. This can be done anywhere outdoors. Provide magnifying glasses (if available) and nature journals so children can record their investigations. Be sure to communicate the intent of looking and not disturbing things found in nature. In addition, children need to be aware that some ants can bite or sting. Once you have found some ants to observe, guide students as they evaluate what they see. Ask questions and draw their attention to specific characteristics of the ant.
Foster an Ant Farm
Want to explore what ants really do underground? Investing in an ant farm will help you do just that. You kids will also think you are the coolest ever! Check out these online retailers (yes, you can get them through the mail!):
Ant Art Projects
You can’t learn about ants without incorporating them into some fun art projects!
Sing About Em’
Break out the musical instruments and get marching like ants with these songs about ants!
Read About Em’
Here are our picks for some entertaining (and informational) stories about ants.
Write About Em’
Writing about a topic can be a great way to solidify concepts taught, assess what has been learned, or simply engage students in a wonderful world of fantasy. The following are writing activities that focus on the topic of ants and incorporate the use of multiple genres.
Eat Em’!!!! Or at least like em’
Ants love sweets! One of their favorite things to eat is a sugary liquid produced by aphids called honeydew. Serve up some melon or a special snack sampler that features different foods ants would enjoy eating. Be sure to teach children how ants really do get their nourishment.
Here are some other ideas for creating bug snacks.