Bug 1: Make a bug posterI gave each of the girls a sheet of poster paper (the little ones... 8 1/2 x 11... kinda like cardstock, but has a sheen to it). I brought in a lot of Missouri Conservationist magazines and other resources I gathered from the library and my own nature collection. I asked the girls to come up with a poster to prove their bug was the best bug ever.
This takes a little time. If your meetings are short, I would suggest having them take this home to complete or work as a team on one poster, rather than making individual ones.
Bug 2: Make a bug craftI took the 3rd suggestion in the badge booklet and we made coffee filter butterflies. You simply use markers to decorate a coffee filter wit h lots of bright colors. These are the wings . Then paint and add glitter to a wooden clothespin for the body. When the pin is dry, clip it i n the middle of the coffee filter to create your butterfly.
We combined Bug 3 and Bug 5, because well... why not!
Bug 5: Take a bug field tripWe were going letterboxing in one of the local parks, so on the way to the box and on the way back, we watched for bugs. The park has a lake and such, so we were able to see different types of bugs around the water compared to dryer areas, etc. This is where we were able to....
Bug 3: See bugs in actionWe called ourselves Bug Stalkers for this badge activity. It felt a bit weird staring at a bug. We also discussed whether or not we felt our presence made the bug act differently. We actually stalked a few different bugs and some seemed to not care we were there and others seemed like a nervous wreck. We moved on from them, as we didn't want to be the cause for bug heart attacks!
Bug 4: Explore bug homesDraw a cocoon. Some bugs, like caterpillars, sleep i n a cocoon. Inside, they transform into a mot h or butterfly. Find out what else goes on i n there. Then draw what you thin k it looks like inside a cocoon.
I brought in a magazine that was talking about butterflies and moths and showed the inside of the cocoon. Since we looked at a picture of what it looks like, I asked the girls to be more creative with their renditions. They sketched out what they would want their cocoon to look like if they were stuck inside it for weeks or longer. Most of them gave a little space for toys and TV. We have 21st century bug girls in our troop.
Additional ActivityTo help the girls not get totally creeped out by the bugs, I made it cool. I bought bug boxes from Amazon that have the magnifying glass in the lid and we caught a few bugs. They knew the bugs couldnt' get out and yet they were able to watch them close up to see the different body parts and such. It was worth the $5. The girls even asked to use the bug boxes numerous times after on fieldtrips, camping trips, and as a filler activity.
You can find them here (please don't tell me 6 years from now that the link doesn't work. Search for Magnifying Bug Box and I'm sure you'll find something.): http://smile.amazon.com/dp/B000RLDQ4E
I'm sure I'm going to catch some criticism for not taking the 5th one seriously, but you have to have fun. We read all about cocoons and the girls know what they actually look like. So, instead of sticking to the exact activity... I tweaked it. It's fine to do that. Believe me, the girls don't really believe a moth caterpillar is dragging in an xbox to play with during transformation. They are way smarter than that.