Ask a kindergarten parent what’s in their freezer from August to September, and they may tell you about the insects being preserved next to their frozen meals. Every fall, SBS kindergarten students collect bugs - insects of all kinds - as part of their learning unit on insects. From houseflies to butterflies, grasshoppers to beetles, and even a live stick insect, lovingly named Abraham, kindergartners marched into school last Friday with bug collections in hand.
Students toured one another’s classrooms, admiring their collections, proudly showing off their unique finds to their friends and classmates. In a sweet show of support, second graders came to visit their kindergarten prayer partners and tour their insect exhibits.
But there was more to this project than meets the eye. Becoming “insect detectives,” students learned to think critically as they not only discovered the characteristics of different types of insects but also learned how to take care of their new class pets -- live caterpillars that would morph into butterflies before their very eyes. “During this process, the students were able to ask and seek answers to their questions about metamorphosis,” says kindergarten teacher Tracey Townsend. “They asked questions like, what happens to the caterpillar’s skin as it gets bigger? And why can’t the butterfly fly immediately after it is hatched?”
When it comes to our lower school students, the whole community loves to get involved with these fun, interactive projects. Second Baptist Executive Chef and kindergarten dad, Brian Duncan ’06, shared his beekeeping hobby with students. Showing off his special beekeeping gear and homemade honey, he answered very thoughtful questions from our curious five and six-year-olds.
How do you integrate a unit on insects with a biblical worldview? It’s easy, according to kindergarten teacher Mary Paige Harris ‘13. “As we studied different insects, we saw the many ways God provided in specific ways for them. For example, God gave caterpillars exoskeletons so they can easily bend to get into J-shape to form a chrysalis. If God cares for tiny creatures He created, how much more does He care for us who are made in His image?”
Stephanie Sems adds, “God has so amazingly crafted the caterpillar to completely change into a different insect.” What an opportunity for students to learn about divine design!