Thursday, August 4, 2011

Young Entomologists of the Future

This summer, I had the wonderful opportunity to hold TWO Entomology Camps for budding entomologists. A total of 48 young people attended my camps ranging in age from 5 years to 14 years!

Every summer I hold an Entomology Camp, and I consider it to be a fun program and way to get to play with insects and get kids pumped up about science. This is the first year I had so much interest that I actually had to plan a second camp.

During camp, every campers receives a collection kit, which the main cost of the camp and the most exciting thing about it to many of the kids. The collection kit has EVERYTHING they need to make a collection. It includes a net, insect pins, killing jars, killing solution, butterfly envelopes, forceps, magnifying glass, non-smearing pen, labels, and a spread board. The box it all comes in turns into the collection box.

During our camp, we collect bugs, learn about entomology, perform experiments, do activities, and just basically learn all you can about insects in four short days. This summer, the kids collected more insects than any other camp I have ever held... and we're in a drought!!!

One of my favorite experiments is to lasso a piece of floss to a bess beetle and see how many pennies it can pull. One little beetle pulled 32 pennies!!! Another fan favorite is a termite experiment. Termites communicate with chemicals called pheromones and certain drying agents in certain pens mimic the termite trailing pheromone. The kids experiment with different pens (ballpoint, marker, gel ink, etc) to see which pen the termites trail. They draw a circle on a piece of paper and dump about 10 termites in the middle. If it works, the termites will start running around the circle. Its really an amazing experiment.

Next summer, I am planning to hold two entomology camps again. They will be held July 16-19 AND July 23-26, 2012 from 9am to 12pm. The cost is $100 for new campers (because they get a kit) and $50 for the returners (who do not need a new kit). If you are interested, contact me at Visit this blog often, because I'll be setting up a Bug Camp Website with updates and registration information.

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