Children seem to love or hate bugs but definitely have a fascination with them. “The Unwanted Itch Hiker” keeps in the grand tradition of bug poems for children but also adds the unique twist in that the narrator doesn’t want to squash a bug. However, as seen in the illustration, this bug is no butterfly.
Discussions for this poem could center around insects and how children feel about them. Have they ever been bitten? What insects do they like? This would also be a great opportunity to discuss with children the value of insects to our environment, even though we often see them as pests.
- Have children write their own story about an insect encounter, either positive or negative and draw a picture.
- As a class or group, research insects that are beneficial to humans and insects that can be harmful or dangerous.
Lead children in an activity designed to build a classroom or group insect collection. If you would prefer not to kill the bugs, have children bring pictures of the bugs. Use the collection to research each bug added to the collection.