Sometimes the best activities are ones that require little to no preparation. I teach a lot of science to young kids and I try to take them outside to explore and learn as much as possible. This science activity was very simple, but it encouraged everyone to look closely and notice everything around us. Sometimes we forget that we share our school and playground with lots of living things and animals. Today we went searching for them.
Once we got outside, students got into small groups. I then gave each group a hula hoop, magnifying glasses and a few popsicle sticks. They then found a spot that they wanted to inspect and they set their hula hoop down. The hula hoop gave them a particular area to study. They then search inside the hoop for any little critters, or signs of critters, that they could find. They used their magnifying glasses to take a closer look and the popsicle sticks to dig to find any living things hidden under a rock or the dirt. We discovered, ants and ant hills, potato bugs and many other small animals. It created a great discussion about how we are surrounded by living things even though we often don’t see them.
40 minute activity length – This activity took a full 40 minute period. However, the time includes the time spent for students to get ready to go outside.