Ants Science Unit

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We just discovered some ants in our house and the first thing my 5 year old did was grab his magnifying glass and tell me he needed to learn about ants.

I love it when my kids have something they want to learn about. It makes the learning so much more fun and they remember what they are learning so much better.

Ants Science Unit for Kids

So while I was planning on waiting until next spring to do a little unit on ants, I decided to follow the interest and we learned about ants.

We had a lot of fun learning about and watching the ants that invaded our house.

If you have ants inside or preferable outside your house this ant science unit is quick and easy to pull together.

Learning About Ants

While I pulled together the worksheets and activities we were going to do to help us learn more about ants the kids got to watch a Magic School Bus episode.

Magic School Bus

I love using the Magic School Bus shows to help with our science lessons. They are a great way to bring science to life for kids and a great starting point for our lessons.

The Magic School Bus Episode we watched was Season 1 Episode 12 – The Magic School Bus Gets Ants in its Pants.

Life Cycle of an Ant and Magic School bus video

You can watch the Magic School Bus online or you can get the whole series on DVD which makes it really nice. We have the DVD set and I have loved it.

This episode of The Magic School Bus follows the class into an ant hill where they learn about the social insects, their different rolls and life cycle.

Watching the episode gave the kids a great overview of ants before we did a couple of worksheets and a science experiment.

Ant Worksheets

While I love doing hands-on activities with my kids as much as possible worksheets are a great way to continue talking about what we are learning and some styles of worksheets I feel like are pretty hands-on and fun for kids.

cut and paste life cycle of an ant for preschool and kindergarten science

For our Ant unit, we used a couple of different worksheets. We used this awesome Life Cycle of an Ant Printable Pack and the Parts of an Ant Worksheet you can get at the bottom of this post.

Little Life Cycle Book

First we made a little life cycle book using the second page of the life cycle pack. I pre-cut out the squares but you could have your kids cut them out if you want.

life cycle of an ant

We talked about each stage of the life cycle and the kids colored the page. Then they helped staple the books together.

Talking about the Life Cycle of an Ant

The Magic School Bus Episode talks about all of the life cycle stages ad my kids remembered most of them. Here is a simple explanation about each of the stages to help with your discussion.

  • Egg: Ant eggs are oval-shaped. Eggs that are fertilized produce female ants and those that aren’t fertilized produce male ants.
  • Larva: These are worm-like and have no eyes or legs.
  • Pupa: The larva forms a cocoon around itself and during this time the pupa transforms into an ant.
  • Ant: An ant emerges from the cocoon, this process can take up to 10 weeks.

Fun Fact – Ants have the longest lifespan of all insects. Queen ants can live up to 30 years and workers can live for 1-3 years.

Cut and Paste Activity

After making our mini books we did the cut and paste activity from the packet.

cut and paste life cycle of an ant

This activity is a great way for young kids to work on their cutting skills.

Parts of an Ant Worksheet

The last worksheet we did was about the parts of an ant. I created my own worksheet since I wanted to keep it simple for my kids.

To do the worksheet you cut and paste the 5 main parts of an ant to the diagram.

Body Parts of an Ant simple worksheet for young science learners

We did this worksheet after doing the science experiment to kind of break things up.

Free Printable

Click the link below to get the parts of an Ant Worksheet to use as part of your unit study.

Ant Science Experiment

For our ant science experiment, we mixed together sugar, water, and food coloring to make a sugar mixture to feed the ants.

making colored sugar water for our ant experiment

We then put drops of the sugar mixture on the floor near the ants. We only had a few ants come over and try the mixture so it didn’t work out as well as we hoped.

ready for some ants to come try our sugar water

For over an hour the kids watched the ants and tried to get them to try the sugar water. When an ant did make it over to the sugar water the kids had fun looking at it through there magnifying glasses.

Ant Craft

We did a simple ant craft to go along with our unit. We used a craft stick, black pom poms and googly eyes to make some little ant puppets.

The kids each glued 3 pom poms to the end of a wooden craft stick and then added two googly eyes.

easy ant craft

This made a fun little ant puppet and we reviewed by talking about how ants have 3 sections of their body.

Reading About Ants

Books are always a great way to help make units fun and continue learning.

We only read one book about ants and it wasn’t even a factual book, but rather a silly one but that worked for our lesson.

Ant Science Unit

Here are a few books about ants you might want to read as part of your unit. Some of these books are fun and silly others are informative.

Under Pants for Ants – is a silly phonics reader that my kids love reading. It has a lot of rhyming and cute images. Get the book on Amazon.

Magic School Bus Get’s Ants in its pants – This Magic School Bus book is what the episode we watched is based on. You could easily read this book instead of watching the episode or do both! Get the book on Amazon.

The Life and Times of the Ant – This informative book shares about the insects impressive history, industry, and sociability. Get the book on Amazon.

National Geographic Readers: Ants – This national geographic book for kids is filled with facts and information about ants. Get the book on Amazon.

Other Activity Ideas

If you want to extend your learning about ants even more here are a few more fun activities you can add to your science unit.

Watch It’s a Bugs Life

Alright you can debate the educational merit of watching It’s a Bugs Life. But even if it’s not exactly factual it’s a fun activity to do with the kids as part of your activities.

Put Together an Ant Farm

Have fun putting together an ant farm and then watching the ants dig tunnels and even watching the whole life cycle of an ant if you have a queen in your farm.

On Pinterest you can find tons of different ideas for making your own ant farm or if you want you can purchase an ant farm along with ants on amazon.

Other Science Activities You Might Enjoy

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Learning about ants for kindergarten science. Use these fun activities and free printable worksheets along with the magic school bus to have fun learning about ants

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