We have enjoyed some social learning at our local aquarium this semester.
I teach a little class with some facts, some books and some crafts and then we head over to look at that animal.
The first was sting rays--amazing animals. I loved researching them and then teaching a bit. My favorite part about them was the amazing way their stinger is arranged to protect them. They actually flip the top of their body over in order to sting someone. And the stinger is covered in a small skin sack that is full of poison. Definitely makes me want to be careful around them! The ones we got to touch at the aquarium had their stingers removed.
Our aquarium is so spacious that we are able to head right up near the animal (or insect) we are talking about, park in an empty corner and learn and create.
This week we had about 30 kiddos--though some of them were babes in arm who I can't really say will take anything about butterflies away from the lesson. : )
Thanks to my oldest, who became a photographer for the day, for all these pics!
(the view behind me while I teach)
Did you know that butterflies and moths are the only insects that can boast scales?
Yes, real live, teeny tiny scales. God paints each one beautifully.
And did you know that moths land with their wings spread out flat, but butterflies land with them up together?
Did you know that some butterfly eggs can wait up to a year to hatch?
And the same is true with the chrysalis--the caterpillar can stay in for up to a year before it emerges as a butterfly.
Penguins are our next class.
Did you know that octopus mommas only ever have one litter of eggs? They lay 1000s of them. If they are fertilized, they wait to die until they hatch. If they aren't fertilized, they begin to starve themselves right away. Their life's work is done, and they naturally die soon after the eggs are laid.
After the class, we all head outside to eat lunch and play in the beautiful lawn. I think the exact same thought every time I am in this area of our downtown--we are so very blessed to live where we live!