There’s nothing quite like Cicada season- when it seems like anything and everything is covered with these buzzing and clicking insects.
Luckily, you can make the most of it when cicadas invade, by creating fun activities to help your young kids learn about the insect. What they look like and their interesting life cycle.
Below is one of my boys’ favorite cicada activities. It may give you the creepy-crawlies- but the kids love it!
Cicada Shell Sensory Activity for Preschoolers Who Love Bugs!
So this sensory activity starts with a bucket full of bugs.
More specifically- a bucket full of the shedded exoskeleton of the cicada.
Sounds fun right?
These exoskeletons can be found EVERYWHERE during cicada season- so just give your kids a bucket and let them go collect.
Then you will need the following supplies:
A piece of floral foam (or anything sturdy enough to hold up the stick)
A couple wooden skewers (or sticks)
A couple pipe cleaners
Optional: A container to hold the foam, to keep it from tipping over
Stick the skewers into the floral foam. Connect 2 together if you want a taller height for the shells to climb.
Spiral the pipe cleaners around the skewer until they reach the top.
Then just let your child explore!
Related Reading: 21 Butterfly Crafts for Toddlers and Preschoolers
The legs of the shells will cling to the pipe cleaners allowing them to climb up and down.
Encourage your child to explore more by seeing what other surfaces the cicada shells will cling too. Give them a magnifying glass to take a closer look. Or if you have a microscope, check cicadas out under that as well.
The bucket of cicada shells is sure to be a favorite part of the nature shells for quite awhile!
Learn More About Cicadas
Cicadia Mania (website dedicated to the amazing cicadas)
Cicadas (Dig Deep! Bugs That Live Underground) (book)
The Bizarre Life Cycle of a Cicada (book)
More Cicada Activities (from MotherNatured)
You can also add cicada shells to your nature scavenger hunt and have your kids search them out before playing with them!