But what else to do?
So I asked my friend Destinee, who is a veteran Forest School teacher, what she would recommend. The first thing she told me was to do a mini unit on the life cycle of the house fly, Musca domestica. Any animal that kids dislike or worry about -- like wasps or hornets -- she does a study of. I did the same thing years ago when the only animal I was afraid of was cockroaches. So I got Madagascar hissing cockroaches as a pet. Worked like a charm.
She also advised that lemongrass essential oil can be used as a repellent and I can put some on our picnic tablecloth. Makes sense. It's an ingredient in Badger's Anti-Bug Balm. I also used lemongrass essential oil on the raw wool that we washed in the Spring for our felted slippers. So I know that it repels fabric moths! Actually, I have a pot of lemongrass, so I suppose I could carry it over to the snack area (until it gets cold and I have to bring it inside).
I had expected to do Birds as our next topic after Butterflies, but I can easily put a House Fly week in there first. Now, I'm looking for resources on the life cycle of the fly. And picture book or story suggestions, if anybody has some. I did find I, Fly: The Buzz About Flies and How Awesome They Are by Bridget Heos, but it's more suitable for grades 2-4 than Kindy. Especially with the bit about the corpses & maggots. Maybe I will have to make up my own story!
Background info on the House Fly:
House Fly (PDF)
Virginia Cooperative Extension - Virginia Tech
quick 2 page summary
World Health Organization
22 pages of fascinating information... print page 2 for nice life cycle diagram
House Fly (PDF)
University of Florida Extension
best for cool full-color photos
The house fly is in Animals Upside Down: A Pull, Pop, Lift & Learn Book! by Steve Jenkins & Robin Page.
Also just found it in Just a Second: A Different Way to Look at Time.
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