This was a big Science week in our homeschool learning! We have chosen to observe a couple of different insects over the next few weeks that are being covered in Hanna's Apologia Science course. First of all, we received our caterpillars and ladybugs from Insectlore. This week we watched our caterpillars grow from very tiny little creatures to "big, fat caterpillars" as Eric Carle wrote. It has been years since we ordered caterpillars and watched them from this tiny stage. We usually just catch our own. It was fun watching them literally plump up over night!
I had big plans for the ladybugs. This turned into quite an ordeal and funny story. Click *here* to read about that and get a good laugh too:-).
We also got mealworms from a local pet store. Hanna and Joe made a "habitat" for these worms and have had fun observing them throughout the week. They will continue to observe them for a while with the hopes that they can actually see the whole mealworm lifecycle evolve.
Hanna enjoyed doing a very simple experiment with Joe on the mealworms. It consisted of taking a shoe box, cutting half of the lid off, placing 5-10 mealworms inside the box and then putting the cut in half lid back on top of the box. They next just watched the mealworms for several minutes to see whether they preferred light or dark. They concluded that the mealworms definitely prefer the dark and gravitated to this side of the box immediately, and remained there!
Out of the above listed books we really enjoyed two this week to help in our studies. Flying Colors: Butterflies In Your Backyard, by Nancy Loewen is one that I read to Joe almost daily. He loved this book. It is bright and colorful. It is very easy for a child his age to understand and comeprehend. I know in talking with him that he understands to the best of his ability the life cycle of a caterpillar/butterfly. This book also describes a butterfly's anatomy and how butterflies help pollinate flowers.
Hanna and Joe both enjoyed Mealworms, by Adriene Mason. I read this to them, and Hanna also read it to Joe several times. This book is a super one for explaining how to create a habitat, maintain and healthily care for/raise your mealworms--we got a few fun mealworm experiments from this book too. It also tells you all their is to know about mealworms, their habits, anatomy and so forth. It has detailed illustrations and is easy to read and comprehend. I thought it was a good book for both Hanna and Joe even though there is almost a 6 year age difference between the two of them.
We are looking forward to watching our caterpillars complete the lifecycle into butterflies over the next couple of weeks, and seeing what our mealworms do. This has been a fun week of Science for us and we've all had lots of fun with everything we've done!
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