Updated: May 17, 2021
Bugs are everywhere!! They make me squirm and run a mile away from it in real-life but for the sake of my child I'm putting up a brave face when I see one, as he is at a stage where he copies everything that we do and I don't want him to miss out on the curious and amazing world of bugs. He started saying "poochi" (meaning insect in our native language, Tamil) when he spots one and it melts my heart, that's when I realised that it is time to introduce him to the world of bugs. He can identify grasshoppers, butterflies, dragonflies, mosquitoes, ants till now.
Insects and bugs are a great way to teach children about science and respect for nature.
Here's how to make a bug lover out of your little explorers.
1) Treat your child to Bugs
Introduce bugs in a non-threatening version of insects that evokes curiosity.
2) Read books about Bugs
3) Learn your local Bugs
There are over millions and millions of bugs. Do your research and introduce the ones that are common in your garden. Introduce the words to your kids first and point and show them the insect next and repeat. This way the next time they identify and name the bug.
4) Go on an Insect Hunt
With a magnifying glass, you can take your child on an adventure through your back yard or at a local field. This is a great way to combine the fun of a scavenger hunt while also encouraging your child to use his powers of observation: Look for bugs on stalks, under leaves, or carefully lift rocks.
5) Teach Bug Safety
Teach about bugs that are harmless and the ones where we have to be careful like bees and wasps. Teach kids to be more empathetic and not to disturb bugs.
6) Model Bug Positivity
Like mentioned earlier, the source of many bug fear for children are... adults. If you screech and scream on seeing a cockroach your kid will too.
7) Have Patience
If your child is not interested in creepy-crawlies do not force them or try to confront their fears by making him/her touch or hold a bug. Give them time and have patience.
Buy our Bug Activity Binder for Toddlers & Insect Flashcards below:
Keep Exploring!!! Stay Curious!!!