It is lady bug season! We can see the tiny bugs crawling throughout our gardens everywhere. These magical bugs always excite my children in a non threatening way. They squeal in delight when finding one or if one happens to land on them. I was always told it is good luck to set a lady bug free and so my children are always catching and releasing these beautiful little insects.
Several days ago my daughter brought me an interesting insect that was attached to a leaf. It was not quite a lady bug, but looked too similar to classify it as something else. We decided the only thing to do was investigate further!
In our house if we find something interesting we always look it up and learn more about it. I believe that taking real life questions / observations and turning them into teachable moments is one of the most signifigant ways for children to learn. Learning in this way helps to develop a love of learning and knowledge. By exploring and questioning our surrounding world children become more observant and eager to learn.
We immediately went to my I pad and began to look up pictures of lady bugs. It didn’t take long to identify the bug my daughter had found, it was the pupa stage of a lady bugs life cycle. This brought up a whole new slew of questions such as what are the different stages of a lady bug? How long does each stage last?
Learning about the lady bug life cycle was fun for the kids and something a little different than the caterpillar life cycle that even my four year knows inside and out. We were able to find and identify several of the stages in our very own garden, which gave a thrill to my children. Learning about something you can observe or (even better) has been discovered by your children always helps to create a significant and lasting lesson. Allow your children to inspire some learning today!
Written By Nicole Rowley