The next time an unwanted arthropod finds its way into your classroom, turn its visit into a learning opportunity for your students. Junior Pest Investigators, a free online curriculum for K-6 teachers, promotes a green pest-prevention method.
Lessons meet national science standards and include studying the important roles these critters have in our environment while emphasizing the “pest” angle only when they enter our living, or learning spaces. The site also offers a class-project contest for teachers to initiate green pest prevention in their school. The grand prize is a $2,500 education grant. (You can identify almost any critter’s species here.)
If you are curious about other ways you can incorporate real-life science into your classroom, a National Research Council publication has suggestions. Ready, Set, SCIENCE!: Putting Research to Work in K-8 Science Classrooms offers curriculum and staff development to help students acquire practical scientific skills and knowledge. The publication suggests how to help guide students in testing theories, scientific debates, and other real-world experiences in the classroom.