Unboxing a Mystery

P1240712An unusual box arrived today.  Curiosity and excitement are bubbling out the door and down the hall.  What could be inside?

  • A hamster in a cage, because I saw one once.
  • A turtle because ___ put his finger in and he said something bit him.  It must be a turtle.
  • I think it’s a stuffed cat.  Stuffed cats come to your house in a box like that.
  • Glass because you said that it is fragile and can’t get hot or cold.
  • A turtle because that’s what some other people said.
  • A real cat.  When kittens came to my house, they came in a box.

We tried listening to the box for clues.  Unfortunately, we didn’t hear anything that might give us clues.


Everyone wrote down their ideas using one of our Feely Box Friday forms.  The top says, “I think it is a________.”  We use the bottom to write about what we actually find.


Finally, we opened the box.  Its contents were not what we expected.  Inside we found bugs! In fact, there were four containers of them.  The bugs are very small and a few of the children were a bit nervous that they might be poisonous.  I quickly assured them that I would never invite a dangerous bug into our school.  The package also contained some white fuzzy things, two little Petri dishes with what appear to be seeds, and some sort of crispy, hard thing that reminded the children of a butterfly “cocoon.”  I’ve set up all of these items in an observable space so we can keep an eye on them.  Our little scientists are looking forward to watching this drama unfold.


Bugged Out!

090914_4697 And now…onto bugs.  I think this may be a record.  This is certainly the earliest we have ever had a group collectively inspire a topic of study.  Within the first few days of school, the children were noticing our creepy, crawly friends.  Some were exclaiming their excitement while others became paralyzed by fear.  We realized that there is a lot we can learn about bugs that might help us with our fears and make us even more adamant junior entomologists.

We asked the Pre-K class to share any questions they had about bugs:

  • How do bugs sting? ZW
  • How can fire ants bite? LW
  • Do fire ants live in New York? LL
  • How does a firefly flash its light on and off? AH
  • How do ants hold on tight? RM
  • How do fire ants spray their fire out? PM
  • Do pink butterflies bite? VH
  • How do ants breathe underwater? NM
  • Do spiders eat you? JK

We’ve talked about how bugs are very small, living creatures that are much more afraid of us than we are of them.  We continue to spot new bugs on the playground every day.