Bugs, Bugs, Bugs! Ants

This blog post was started exactly a month ago today. Do I need to say anything more about how the last month has been? What I can say FOR SURE is that I am glad I can now call it LAST month even though it’s not a new calendar month yet. I also find comfort in knowing  God is always ahead of me saying, “Don’t stay in that sad place! Follow me!” So here is where I was a few short weeks ago…trust me you’re glad I waited to post this…it has undergone quite a bit of editing today!

Right now I am pretending there aren’t two balloons with their tails tightly wrapped in the ceiling fan above me, there’s not a minimum of 8 loads of laundry that used to be folded, but now are entangled with the boys costumes strewn over almost every inch of carpet in this room, and you can’t see any sign that I have counters under all the stuff on them. There is still one tiny corner to set my bowl of fruit topped with ice cream on the coffee table, so….I’m good. It is time to take 30 minutes to myself and watch The Good Wife, with a bowl of Good Food and refresh my no-so-Good Attitude. I am officially in TIME OUT! So besides crying because I can’t figure out why my kid is having such a rough time with life, what else have been doing?

We have ANTS! Really cool ants, not the ones that shouldn’t be in your pantry – although we have those on occasion also.

“Go to the ant, you slacker! Observe his ways and become wise. Without leader, administrator, or ruler, it prepares its own provisions in summer; it gathers its food during harvest.” Proverbs 6:6-8

We’ve been very impressed watching our ants tunnel through layers of colored dirt. They really are hard workers and they don’t even have the Kingdom of God to look forward to! There’s an abundant lesson to be taught here so we spent a few days talking about it and comparing ourselves to the ants. The resounding theme of the week; God does not want us to be lazy! This lesson COULD NOT have fallen on a better week! This week had brief moments of normalcy, but I am convinced clones came and took the place of my boys and they were NOT nice!

I tried to put a pretty twist on things for the ladybug post, mostly because I was trying to talk myself out of how horrible the behavior was getting…but I had to call Noah home from work one day because I was just that DONE! I have NEVER, EVER, EEEEVVVVEEERRRR had to have Noah step in….that is how DONE I was. I was unable to not snap and all rational was far far out of reach. I am usually very quick-witted and have no trouble responding to the daily challenges of my life. But for whatever reason their constant nagging, fighting and complete and udder disobedience in EVERY form really weighed me down. Am I the ONLY one that has even been that furious? I was thankful that I’m not a spanker…they were too! I love my boys…but THIS will NEVER happen AGAIN! Why do I believe this went down so hard? Once again, I was forgetting to take care of ME! Skipping breakfast because I’d rather sleep in after going to bed way to late, allowing others to hurt my feelings instead of standing my ground…you know the normal stuff. Now back to ants….

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Poor Isaiah had a 104 fever the night we had to transfer the ants, but he did not want to miss out!

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Captain Color was very insistent on which order the sand had to go in.

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What do you mean the ants bite and it stings????

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I’ll just stay back here Daddy!

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One crazy ant escaped! Perhaps I should have been ready to put the cover on and not have been taking pictures…oops!

There was one ant that escaped when Noah was putting them in their new home! We were just going to squash the biting little thing, but the boys got all upset at that plan of action. We managed to get him back in the tube without injury. We then had to put the entire habitat in the fridge to make the other ants huddle so we could add this one little ant into the mix. We finally did it and made two boys very happy. What a perfect example to enforce that truth that God sacrificed himself for every one of us. Even the rebellious one who just wants to run away from Him.

I accidentally knocked their habitat over when I was cleaning the other day and it didn’t even slow them down! I really did everything wrong with this experiment. I didn’t read the directions before I ordered the ants and never prepared the soil with water…oops. dejavoo! So, we had to do it the day we were putting the ants in and now a few weeks into it, they are finally able to tunnel. They are however still alive and feisty unlike the first ladybugs.

There are some printable posters here: http://www.instantdisplay.co.uk/springpage.htm I didn’t waste the ink, but they’re good if you don’t have two computers in your schoolroom.

We’ve been singing The Ants Go Marching for DAYS! It’s fun to make up different rhymes. I kept seeing this book come up when I researching ants. The library only had it Spanish so I almost didn’t order it, then I decided the last minute to add it to my Amazon order. I’m so glad I did! It’s the cutest book that can be used to talk about tolerance, respect and diversity. It is fitting right into our Bible lesson. Each page goes back and forth between the boy who wants to squish the ant and the ant who wants to live. In the end, the reader is left to make up their mind on whether then shoe squashes the ant or not. Isaiah yelled, “Squish it!” while Samuel yelled, “Don’t squish it!” What a wonderful way to lead into respecting others opinions!

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I am so glad I bought this book!

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I found these at the Dollar Store.

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The boys love a good experiment.

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Which grew into this!

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We made a fun maze for the boys to let their HexBugs so explore. The bugs were stronger than they thought and broke through the walls! We need lots more HexBugs!! They are pretty fun!

Another Epic fail for me missing the McDonald’s HexBugs in their Happy Meal promotion. The boys were not at all happy to have earned a trip to McDonald’s with good behavior and then have it announced the bugs were gone….oops.

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We watched a little bit of this movie on YouTube, But the boys just weren’t into it. Even with popcorn!

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Jammies, popcorn & snuggly blankets in the schoolroom = a really fun day!

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We used this book again, but it just had a short part on ants.

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This is the same series as the ladybug book and it’s just as good! It really made the boys think about being an ant. They decided they like being humans

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We use this Childcraft series a lot. I’d love to get my hands on a version newer than 1970!

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This book has a really cute poem about what it would be like if we could walk on walls and the ceiling and if we had to crawl with our heads down all the time.

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The boys loved this book where the little boy gets a bunch of “aunts” for his birthday. Very cute!

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Only a tiny bit about ants in here, but boys love gross things anyway.

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This was a great book to show how hard all insects work.

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Lots of fun ideas for snacks, crafts and projects. I still like Pinterest better :)

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Great books.

Cute video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xozQnsGkHJ4 the boys likes pointing out all the things not true about ants.

This is more scientific: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Er-OnJCn1gg I had a hard time finding ones that weren’t creepy.

I wish I could do this experiment at home for the boys.

How cool is this!! You can check it out here: http://www.mymodernmet.com/profiles/blogs/rainbow-colored-ants

We did a few crafts:

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Ants made out of spoons and pipe cleaners.

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Samuel’s ant hill.

We did a few activities:

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Fingerprint ant hills.

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We grew these from capsules.

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Making bug impressions in playdough.

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Bug fossil fun.

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Feeling the impressions in the dough.

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Such a fun, tactile activity.

Wait, WHAT? You made fun food to go with the lesson??

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Any hill breakfast.

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marshmallow ants. What makes this so funny is the bag of marshmallows was under attack by real sugar ants. I can’t seem to get rid of them!

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You saw these on ladybug day.

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And this.

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I made an anthill cake for Noah’s birthday. It was Paleo banana chip cake.

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When you cut it open…you guessed it..chocolate ants…YUM!

We finished up by putting all our class work and observations in a new ant lapbook.

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We took several trips outside to find ants in different places. I’m sure I forgot other things we did…but you get the idea.

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