Here is a free ladybug clock download that is cute. I just add two construction paper half circles with a brad so they open over the clock when it is made, and the children can dab on black spots. The children picked up telling time to the hour and half hour very quickly this year. We also have been practicing counting by 5's, so this made that very relevant for them.
After reading the story and practicing on my big clock for a while, we went outside to see just how big the blue whale was compared to the ladybug. I had a piece of rope 45 feet long (the length of a average whale) and a red button.
One child held our "ladybug" where another child held one end of the rope.
Then, we s-t-r-e-t-c-h-e-d out that rope to see how long a whale was.
When we came inside and sat back on the rug, we turned and talked about what made us grouchy. I learned that LOTS of things make five and six year olds grouchy! Each child wrote what made him or her grouchy on a speech bubble. Later that day, we cut out ladybugs, glued on our grouchy face picture, six legs and two antennas, and made dots with a cotton swab. I love this activity. Here are some favorite grouchy faces:
Big Dipper is the "famous" ice cream store at the bottom of our hill by the school. We take our ice cream trips very seriously here in Apalachin, and we LOVE our Big Dipper! The kids write about it a lot in the spring. They actually count down days until it opens in the spring. :)
This one may be my very favorite, because he said he was grouchy when his mom goes to work. When I asked him why, he said, "because my mom works like a million whale lengths away from home!" <3
During free choice time, I had the children come to my table to paint ladybug rocks for their gardens. We had talked about how good ladybugs are for the garden- and they knew that ladybugs loved eating aphids!
First, I drew the outline on the stone. OK- backing up, very first, my husband and I went to the creek to find many beautiful oval stones, perfect for bug-making! Then, I drew the outline:
They drew a little face on the front part and wrote their name on the bottom with a Sharpie. Then, they painted the sides red and the back section black. They put the black dots on right then with a cotton swab. I thought they would have to wait until it dried, but it worked just fine to do it all at the same time.
When they were all dry, I shellacked them so they would be more weatherproof outside in a garden.
My own children made these when they were young, and they lasted for years outside once they were sprayed. We also made "Lonely Fireflies" with glow in the dark paint on the back end! Yes- they glowed in the garden!
For our Science lesson, we watched the videos on my Eric Carle Prezi about the ladybug lifecycle and the different types of ladybugs like this one:
And who doesn't love the Ladybug Picnic song?