Our stick bugs have begun laying eggs.
Our original stick bug – Twiggy – had died before ever laying eggs so this is a new experience for all of us. Each new question the children come up with results in a trip to Google to find out. I am definitely not a stick bug expert so I don’t know the answers either.
I’m amazed by the amount of stick insect info on the net and especially astounded by the number of youtube videos of hatching insects! This has been an incredible learning experience for all of us.
The first important fact we’ve discovered is that it will be many months before they begin to hatch and some could take years. This is a calming fact for me since my first reaction was mild panic as I envisioned a sudden stick bug population explosion.
The children however may loose interest quickly which is why I consider the internet to be such an important learning tool. In true emergent curriculum fashion we can find the answers to our questions when the children are actively engaged in the activity instead of waiting for a trip to the library or a scheduled “insect theme” week.
So now the dilemma for me is what to do to keep the children engaged in learning with the ‘event’ so far away. I could just wait, let the initial interest die off and them reignite it in a few months when (and if) hatching begins.
I could also guide the children towards another similar topic – but what? The answer to that came from the five year old who asked ‘Why aren’t they white?” After a brief discussion I discovered that he knew some eggs could be brown but most were white. Up until now his only experience with eggs has been with the ones he’s seen in the grocery store or on the farm.
I quickly grabbed my bird book and we checked out the amazing variety of eggs. Now we have a topic. Eggs. Oh, the things we can do with eggs….
My mind is spinning with ideas. It’s time to start an idea web about eggs. This is emergent curriculum in action.