dead bug: provocation, observation, documentationPosted: September 27, 2012 | Author: Jena | Filed under: after school cool down, Artsy Fartsy, Developmental Themes, Drawing, Outside | Leave a comment »
“Teaching a child not to step on a caterpillar is as valuable to the child as it is to the caterpillar.” Bradley Millar
We go on hikes often, and collect natural objects that we find on the ground. We observe creatures in their habitats, but try our hardest not to disturb them.
Sometimes, we find dead insects, like a dragon fly or in this story, a grasshopper. Even though the grasshopper is dead, we treat the insect’s body with the utmost respect, still carrying and handling it with gentle hands.
I think of grasshoppers as shy insects. If you get close to one, it makes a tremendous leap away from you. The grasshopper we find is not so lucky, but we are able to get a very close look.
We set the grasshopper up on a honorable altar as a provocation and make our observations. We set up a magnifying glass, small flashlights, paper and drawing tools. The kids draw what they see.
Did you know they sing with their legs? Males sing, by rubbing the hairs on their back legs against their wings, to attract females and to warn off other males.
The northern grasshopper can leap 20 times the length of his body.
They have no ears, but they do hear with an organ called tympanum.
When grasshoppers are picked up, they “spit” a brown liquid commonly called “tobacco juice.” Scientists believe this liquid may protect them from attacks by predators.