Build an Insect Craft with Preschoolers
Preschoolers love to learn about all things bugs and they are fascinated by all the different types whether they fly, crawl, or slither. While there are some little learners who love to touch bugs, many preschoolers would rather keep their distance. This building insect craft will have all types of students excited to construct their own creepy crawler!
This craft is the perfect addition to an insect theme when it's too rainy to get outside to explore real bugs! This building insect tutorial allows preschoolers to explore and create the different parts of bugs but it also fosters creativity as each preschoolers bug will look a bit different.
Teacher Tip: Organize materials in a plastic vegetable tray for each different bug, it helps to make things easier for preschoolers to see and grab.
Building the Spider
Let's get started with building a spider. I think most preschoolers would agree that pretend spiders are much better than real ones. This friendly spider is simple to make.
Start by using a brown marker to make dots on the styrofoam ball, then have preschoolers glue on 2 googly eyes. Pre-cut brown pipe cleaners into 8 equal sizes and then glue directly into the ball, 4 on each side.
Teacher tip: Having precut pipe cleaners helps make this project a bit more independent since all the materials will be prepped and ready to go for students
Building a Butterfly
Butterflies are one of the prettiest bugs out there, and definitely a preschool favorite. These butterflies are so pretty and super easy to make.
To start you will use 2 cupcake liners folded in half and glued to either side of a colored craft stick to form the wings. Then you will glue on the eyes at the end of the stick. You can use different patterned cupcake liners similar to below or use white ones for preschoolers to decorate before attaching to the craft stick.
Building a Caterpillar
Last, but not least, the caterpillar. I'm not sure if it's the fascinating lifecycle or the fuzzy little bodies, but preschoolers love to find and touch caterpillars! Building this insect takes a little bit more creativity, patience, and a bit of assembling but your preschoolers will have a blast.
Start by having precut pipe cleaners, green or whatever color your preschoolers choose. Cut them into 12 equal pieces large enough to form a circle then secure the circles by twisting ends around the circle itself.
You'll need muffin liners rolled into flat puffs with the color/design side up. And, then place one circle inside another one similar to as shown below and fill each ball with a muffin liner to form the body.
Teacher tip: It's helpful to have an example of the caterpillar for preschoolers to see as it helps them understand the steps more clearly when building their caterpillar.
Then glue the balls together at the intersections, using liquid glue will help secure the pieces together.
Continue the process until all 6 body pieces are complete. On the last body piece glue on googly eyes for the head of the caterpillar.
Glue the balls together at the intersections
If your preschoolers want their caterpillar to have little legs then you'll want to cut 12 equal size pieces of another green pipe cleaner to make the legs and glue them to the bottom of each ball. You can leave the body in separate parts or glue each one together. This craft is a little more complex and requires a bit more assistance but twisting the pipe-cleaners allows for some fine-motor practice! And, it's also great STEM practice for putting it all together!
Building insects is the perfect activity to include in your insect unit! This is a great activity to foster independence and encourage preschoolers to construct their own bugs.
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