My work at the Oxford Museum of Natural History is in the Learning Team of the NLHF-funded HOPE for the future project. Our aim was to commence visiting schools in Summer 2020 but this was put on hold by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Instead, we altered our focus to providing resources online that teachers could either use in school or set as remote work for their students. We also thought that families at home might like to try the activities.
The suite of six resources is aimed at Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 3, although some were also trialled successfully with younger children. They form a sequence but can also be used as stand-alone items. We also produces some planning and recording templates for some activities.
You can see an overview of all the downloadable resources on the Hope Learning Resources webpage. Please feel free to download them for use with your classes.
How to spot an insect covers Insect anatomy and what makes insects distinct from other arthropods. There’s a multiple-choice quiz to help check understanding.
Insect ID introduces classification by looking at the ‘Big 5’ insect orders: beetles, true flies, true bugs, bees wasps & ants, and butterflies & moths. There’s also a quiz to check understanding.
Know your bees focuses on this group of insects with practical activities on observing, identifying and investigating British bees.
Three investigations then follow, the first on insects visiting different flowers. This structured activity takes children through the stages of an investigation using simple equipment.
Investigating Insect Pollination includes activities on observing pollinators visiting flowers, forming a research question based on these observations, then planning an investigation to answer this question.
Bee experiment: time of day covers a focussed investigation into the foraging behaviour of bees visiting a specific flower type.
If you use any of these resources, we’d love to hear what you think. Either comment here or use this feedback form.
We are currently planning the next part of the project which is a virtual summer school to run during the school summer holidays.
Thanks to PGCE students at Oxford University Department of Education and members of the OUMNH Youth Forum for commenting on drafts of these activities. Thank you too to teachers and pupils of Larkrise Primary School, St Gregory the Great Primary School, and Windmill Primary School for trialling the resources.
You can read about resources to teach and support the development of good study skills in this post on Study Skills Guides.