Whales began looking more closely at the Polyphemus Moths that have been hatching in the atelier over the last two weeks. We took one of the adult moths and a cocoon into the classroom as we explored the life cycle of this beautiful insect. Whales looked at photos of the life cycle up close and discovered how similar their life cycle is to a butterfly's. That same day, the Polyphemus Moth cocoon hatched, and Whales were fascinated as we watched the adult (Whales decided it was a female because of the size of her antennae) hang upside down and allow gravity to pull her wings out. We had plenty of enthusiasm as we completed scientific illustrations of the moths the next day.
As we were studying the colors of the moths for our illustrations, Whales noticed that the female moth was laying eggs! We watched her as she deposited eggs all over the inside of the glass jar she was placed in. It was so intriguing to see the parts of the life cycle happen right before our very eyes!
Later in the week, Whales were introduced to the newest member of our classroom; a Spiny-Backed Orb Weaver spider named Charlotte. We spent lots of time examining her, and created a list of observations that we decided we might want to turn into a "Charlotte Poem". We are excited to take care of her, and will spend the next few weeks talking about insects, spiders and bugs in more detail. Stay tuned for more "buggy stuff" from the Whales!