Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Lightening Glow Bugs

With summer in full bloom it is very easy for younger kids to get antsy and out of routine. I am always on the lookout for fun and unique craft projects that tie into what we are learning in our weekly summer reading themes.

This week we are studying insects and spiders and I found this great little project to make lightening bugs.

What you need:
Small empty disposable water bottle
Tape or glue
Construction paper in various colors or a printed copy of attached template
Glow stick

Since we did this project in the middle of our classroom time I found it easier to cut everything out beforehand but a child with a few scissor skills would benefit from the practice.

To start you will need to either print out the template below or hand draw your own images. If you are printing the template be sure to do a print preview to make sure you are using the printing area of your printer. You will need a three segmented body, a pair of double wings, six legs, and a pair of antennae.  
Don’t be afraid to add a little education into your craft project either. Explain to your child what makes an insect.
The head- where it has its brain and sensory organs like mouth and antennae.
The thorax- this is where its legs and wings attach. An insect has 6 legs and usually two pairs of wings.
The abdomen- this is where the heart and digestive tract are.
Don’t forget, spiders are not insects. They have eight legs and only two body segments!

Have your child tape or glue the main body to the front of their empty water bottle. Next have them line of the wings in the back of the bottle and attach those as well.  Help attach the antennae to the back of the head and the legs to the thorax. Be sure to help your child understand that the legs attach to the middle segment of their body.
We drew faces on our little bugs as well as decorated their wings.
Lastly, activate your glow stick by gently snapping it and drop it into your bottle. Be sure to tightly close the bottles top again and let your little buggers go play with their new lightening glow bugs.

These are great on camping trips to run around with or hang from the top of a tent.