I like to make a quick graph to see how many children call these "fireflies" and how many call them "lightning bugs." I am usually always in the minority with "lightning bugs," except for the few who then feel sorry for me and try to switch their answer to make me feel better. :) I love any excuse to make a quick graph so we can practice "how many more." My kids are always very good at most, least, more, less, but "how many more" is sometimes tricky for them. Just a couple weeks ago, everyone finally got it! We match up the ones we can, and whatever votes are left without matches are the "how many more."
My kids LOVE to know things they think maybe even grown-ups might not know- so today I taught them that the male, or boy, fireflies fly around and blink up in the sky, but the female, or girl, fireflies blink in down in the grass and don't fly. I had the children turn and teach each other this fun fact, and we acted it out with our hands up high blinking for the boys- and down low blinking for the girls. I bet lots of moms and dads learned something new at dinner tonight!
We watched the lifecycle of a firefly on my Eric Carle Prezi, and the children were excited to learn that they are called "glowworms" before they are fireflies. Another fun fact!
We made some of our own fireflies to hang up in our bedrooms. First, the children colored the fireflies beautifully- all except the back end. Then, with a cotton swab, the children paint the back end of the firefly with glow-in-the-dark paint. The paint needs to be quite thick on the back, and then it will really glow great!
I also printed this sheet on cardstock, and cut out some of the bigger fireflies so the children could make a firefly to clip on something in their bedroom. For the back end, we dipped the cotton ball into the glow in the dark paint, then glued it onto the firefly. I just used Elmer's glue to glue the firefly onto the clothespin. You could also use hot glue, but Elmer's worked fine.
This is them actually glowing! :)
I have also made the garden bug fireflies, like my grouchy ladybug stones, and painted the back end with glow-in-the-dark paint, and they have worked well glowing outside in the garden!
During Writing Centers, we talked about times we felt lonely and then wrote about them.
I got a kick out of the clever way the children spelled "nobody." I had never seen this way before:
When I handed back the dried firefly pictures to take home, I had the shades pulled and I turned off the lights at the count of three, so everybody's paper glowed. I loved the sound of eighteen "ooooohhhhs!"
Finally, before buses were called, we played the firefly word wall game. The lights were off, and my laser pointer was my firefly. The children had to read the word it landed on as fast as they could! I have also done this with a flashlight.
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