May 21, 2012

Ants Day 3 -Ant Jobs

Ant Jobs
Discuss: There are three main ant jobs; queen ant, worker ants, and male ants.

Queen Ant- Queen ant lays all the eggs and she is the mother of all the ants in the nest. All queens start out with wings. All have large abdomen's to produce eggs. Some can lay millions of eggs per year.

Male Ants- All males have wings and do no work in the colony. They can be seen for only a few weeks in the summer while they mate with the queen.

Worker Ants- All workers are female, but they do not lay eggs. Females are the smallest ants, they do all the chores: clean the nest, gather food, take care of the babies and defend the colony. Some species such as carpenter ants and fire ants have several sizes of workers; the larger workers have different job duties than the smaller workers.

Worker Jobs- Workers have many different jobs to do. They begin their work by cleaning themselves. A couple days later they start sharing food and licking each other. Here are a some of the different jobs done by the worker ants.

Queen Tender- Young ants help the queen deliver her eggs by grabbing the eggs with their mandibles.

Nurse Ant- Young ants lick larvae so they do not dry out, and feed them so they grow.

Tunnel Diggers- Young ants dig tunnels and new chambers to store eggs and larvae and food.

Guard- These ants stand near the entrance of the nest, blocking strange ants from entering.

Foragers- The oldest ants search for food. Most foragers search within 50 feet of the nest, but if food is scarce, they may travel thousands of feet.

Read: Ant Colony by Kathy Furgang

Comprehension Questions:
  1. What are the three types of ants? Queen ant, male ants, worker ants
  2. What does the queen ant do? Lay the eggs
  3. What do the worker ants do? Take care of baby ants, dig tunnels, guard nest an forage for food
Things I Can Remember
We used the Things I Can Remember to Do Without Being Told ant writing paper for this activity.  We talked about how ants just know what to do, there is no one ant in charge.  Then we talked about what J could do without being told.

Aesop's Fable: The Ant and The Grasshopper
In Bible times and pioneer days, almost every family had to plant a garden in the spring in order to have enough food for the next winter. Ants also work to prepare for future needs, gathering and storing food in warm weather, before winter comes.
It [the ant] has no commander, no overseer or ruler, the ant stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest. (Proverbs 6:7)
Ants, known for being hard workers, are commended by God for their initiative. Ants have no leader—no commander to direct them, no overseer to inspect their work, no ruler to prod them on. People should learn from the ant and not act only when commanded.

Read: The Ant and the Grasshopper by Mark White
    Comprehension Questions:
  • Who are the two characters in the story?
  • Why is the Ant working so hard?
  • Why is the grasshopper telling him to stop?
  • When winter comes what is the grasshopper’s problem?
  • How does he solve his problem?
  • What lesson does he learn from this experience?
We used page 41 of this download for our Aesop's Fable story.

Picnic Ant Place Mat

Read: Ants at the Picnic by Michael Dahl

  1. Fun Facts on page 24 of Ants at the Picnic by Michael Dahl
  2. Find the Numbers on page 24 of Ants at the Picnic by Michael Dahl
  3. 3.  Get your bag of tiny ants and estimate how many ants you have. Then counting ants by 10's pull out a large quantity of plastic ants. Children take a handful of plastic ants and place them in groups of tens on the placemat, then record the number of ants.
  • Red and White Construction Paper
  • Black Paint
  • Black Marker
  • Clear Con-Tact Paper
  • Scissors
1. Fold the white paper in half and cut lines from the folded side to the other side (but stop cutting about an inch from the side). Cut lines about an inch apart.
2. Weave the red strips through the white strips of paper by going over the first piece then under the next piece and so on, alternating the rows. Keep the red pieces as close together as possible. 
3. Continue weaving your paper pieces until you have used all the red pieces of paper or until all of the white strips are full.
4. Add a couple of ants to your picnic place mat by dipping a fingertip into black paint and making three overlapping fingerprints to form an ant's body. 
5. Let the paint dry and then use the black marker to draw on six legs and antennae.
6. Finish the place mat by cutting two pieces of clear Con-Tact paper so they are at least and in larger all around than your place mat. Pull the paper backing off of one piece of cut Con-Tact paper. Carefully lay this piece, sticky side down, on top of your place mat. Smooth out all air bubbles as you lay it down. Now, flip over your place mat and cover the backside. Trim the edges of the Con-Tact paper about half an inch bigger than the place mat. Your picnic place mat is now ready to use!
Then we had a picnic lunch!
Proverbs 6:6
Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! (Proverbs 6:6)
  • Who wrote this verse? King Solomon
  • What does it mean? to be a hard worker like the ant
  • Does God want us to walk on all fours like ants do? no
  • What can we learn from ants? to work hard with no one telling us what to do
Physical traits describe someone’s appearance (tall, skinny, blue-eyed, curly-haired, petite, etc.). Character traits describe someone’s personality (brave, stubborn, hard worker, polite, shy, etc.). What do you think God wants us to learn about ants? Physical traits or character traits?

 Directions:  We used our Bible and page 26 from this download for our Proverbs 6:6 Bible verse.

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