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Insect Models Lesson Plan

Instructor: Kerry Gray

Kerry has been a teacher and an administrator for more than twenty years. She has a Master of Education degree.

This lesson plan may be used to help your students create and label models of insects. Further, students will be able to identify the parts of an insect and label them using proper terms.

Learning Objective

Upon completion of this lesson on insect models, students will be able to:

  • Build models of various insects.
  • Label the parts of insects using content-specific terminology.

Time Length

90 minutes

Common Core Curriculum Standards


Follow precisely a multistep procedure when carrying out experiments, taking measurements, or performing technical tasks.


Determine the meaning of symbols, key terms, and other domain-specific words and phrases as they are used in a specific scientific or technical context relevant to grades 6-8 texts and topics.


Integrate quantitative or technical information expressed in words in a text with a version of that information expressed visually (e.g., in a flowchart, diagram, model, graph, or table).

Lesson Instructions and Activities


Students will be able to identify and duplicate the following parts of an insect:

  • abdomen
  • antenna
  • compound eyes
  • coxa
  • femur
  • head
  • legs
  • mandible
  • spiracles
  • tarsus
  • thorax
  • tibia
  • trochanter
  • wings


  • Copies of Eyewitness Insect by Laurence Mound
  • Whiteboard
  • Dry erase markers
  • Paper
  • Pencils
  • Clay
  • Toothpicks
  • Index cards
  • Water bottles (empty)
  • Styrofoam circles
  • Foam sheets
  • Pipe cleaners
  • Paint
  • Paint brushes
  • 1/2' round labels
  • Googly eyes
  • Tape/glue
  • Markers

Reading and Discussion

  • Preview vocabulary with students prior to reading the story.
  • While reading 'The parts of an insect' from Eyewitness Insect by Laurence Mound to students, pause at the appropriate times to ask the following discussion questions:
    • What happens to a young insect's skin as it grows?
    • What are the three main sections of an insect's body?
    • What parts are attached to the insect's head?
    • How is an insect's head like a human head and how is it different?
    • Why do insects need compound eyes?
    • What body parts are attached to an insect's thorax?
    • Describe how insects breathe.
    • Describe the parts of an insect that are attached to its abdomen.
    • What are the parts of an insect's legs? What function does each part play?

Clay Insect Models

Materials needed: copies of Eyewitness Insect by Laurence Mound, paper, pencils, clay, toothpicks, index cards

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