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Summer SAVY 2016 (Session 2, Day 3) – Entomology: The Science of Bugs

Posted by on Wednesday, June 22, 2016 in Grade K, SAVY.

Dear Parents:

What a fantastic day we had today! On our journey over to the field trip to the Bioscience lab, the students were so excited, and they experienced such enjoyment remarking at buildings, bugs, sculptures, bridges and the overall scenery. We were met by our host, Dr. Hillyer and some members of his staff. Our learning began with information shared with us by Dr. Hillyer about entomology, and the wonderful world of bugs!

Here are some highlights of our learning that you can discuss with your child ( I took copious notes).

Insect characteristics: exoskeleton, 3 body parts (head, thorax, abdomen), 6 legs, antennas, most have wings (we had learned this in class on Monday and I was happy to see that students remembered). Over 1MM types have been discovered, diverse

Where insects live: aerial, aquatic, subterranean, terrestrial, some live alone such as dragonflies and others live in groups, like bees

They are grouped according to their habitat

         Growth and life-cycles: they grow and change over time, they shed exoskeletons(molt) as they grow and get new ones, some keep the same shape as they grow, they just look like small replicas of their parents (this is gradual metamorphosis or incomplete life cycle) such as beetles, while others change shape as they grow (complete metamorphosis life cycle-egg, caterpillar, chrysalis, adult)), such as butterflies, insects can also change habitats like mosquitoes (from water to land and air)

What is an entomologist and what do they do? A person who studies insects, they seek to foster the life of beneficial insects, fight destructive insects, study the role that insects play in agriculture, human health, etc., catalog the diversity of life, coordinate public awareness and education, curate museum insect collections

What does this lab study? Mosquitoes because they are harmful to humans by passing viruses to them, they grow them, and study them

Bad/Good Insects: most insects are good, but those that destroy crops and harm people are bad, examples of bad insects: mosquitoes, termites, tomato hornworm, examples of good insects: termites (they are good and bad depending where they are), butterflies, honeybees, ladybugs

After the information part of the field trip, students broke into two small groups and got to rotate between labs to look at mosquitoes under microscopes, as well as to tour the insectary (that is a mosquito nursery). Students observed the different stages of life in the mosquito life cycle and looked at the beating heart as well as the inside of a mosquito who had just ingested blood.

Walking back, the students commented on how much fun this trip had been! When we returned to the classroom, students did pastel renderings of themselves as entomologist for our art gallery.

Open House is Friday morning from 9:00am-9:30am!

Bugging out for now,

Karen Fletcher

Entomology Instructor