National Insect Week returns in 2020
The winners of this year’s Great Bug Hunt competition have been announced! The competition, brought to you by the Association for Science Education (ASE) and supported by the Royal Entomological Society (RES), takes science learning out of the classroom and brings it to life outdoors.
The winning entries were chosen by a team of judges, including Francisca Sconce from the RES and Rebecca Dixon Watmough from the ASE.
The children explored habitats to discover and record some fascinating invertebrates. Their finds were then explained and displayed in workbooks, posters and factsheets using graphs, photos, pictures and poems.
“The Great Bug Hunt competition is a brilliant way of bringing science to life for children and shows that you can go on a journey of discovery in your own backyard. Not only does the competition do a great job of capturing children’s imaginations, it also fits in well with the science curriculum. Using the natural environment when teaching is an important part of science education and something the ASE strongly advocates through its Outdoor Science Working Group” (Marianne Cutler, ASE Professional Development (Projects) Lead).
First prize of an “insect day” at the school goes to the Convent of Jesus and Mary Catholic Infant and Junior School in Willesden, London, who also won the Year 1 and 2 category.
The winners of the other groups are as follows:
Year 3 & 4 – St Gregory’s Catholic Primary School, Chorley
Year 5 & 6 – Templars Primary School, Coventry
They win a goody bag from the RES, all the children who entered will receive a certificate.
“We were delighted to take part in this amazing project, which not only encourages outdoor learning and awareness of bugs in the local habitats, but also enables the children to use their scientific skills across the curriculum. The children were excited to venture into the hidden world of minibeasts around the school grounds.
They were engaged in a range of activities which included data branching, sorting, data collecting, identifying and classifying.
They were also inspired by their findings to undertake projects about a variety of bugs such as ladybirds and aphids. (Malgorzata Saiz, The Convent of Jesus and Mary RC Infant School, Willesden).
"I enjoyed leaning new facts. I know that insects have 3 body parts and 6 legs but arachnids have 2 body parts and 8 legs." (Jack).
"I didn't even know we have so many bugs in our school garden!" (Nichole).
"I know that bees are very important so we must not hurt them. I was surprised to see that they like small blue flowers." (Axel).
The winning day will take place in September with an insect day provided by the Royal Entomological Society.
“Well done to all the children and teaching staff who entered the Great Bug Hunt competition this year, I really enjoyed judging the fabulous entries. Insects and other invertebrates provide an excellent route into the natural world, to investigate the diversity of life, how animals are adapted to their environment and the important roles they play in ecosystems.” Francisca Sconce, RES
There are lots of contenders here – possibly the pretty red and blue rove beetle Paederus – very, very tiny amounts of its poison have been used to cure chronic ulceration in people. Ladybirds are pretty poisonous (and pretty) and can bleed foul-tasting poisonous brightly coloured blood from their knees.