Last year one of the books on the list for the Sunshine State Young Reader’s Award books was The Worm Whisperer by Betty Hicks. The story is about a boy who spends lots of time outdoors with animals and who thinks he can actually talk with them. He discovers a caterpillar that he thinks he can train to follow his directions. Since he is also trying to solve all his family’s problems, he decides to participate in the annual Woolly Worm Race, hoping to win the $1,000.00 prize money.
During one of the weekly grade level meetings, I suggested to the third grade teachers that I had a great follow up activity that involved science and worms. One of the teachers took the” hook” and decided to join me in the makerspace for a fun and educational activity using Worm Goo. I had purchased a kit from Steve Spangle (www.SteveSpanglerScience.com) to make Insta-Worms. There are step by step instructions and lots of different ways to experiment with Worm Goo. Students each made their own worms and they actually took them home in a plastic bag! Even the classroom teacher enjoyed this lesson and this year she told me she already put it in her lesson plan book for us to do it again. You can see how excited they were in the pictures above.
In fact, you can use this for any children’s book with a worm or worms in it. The sky is the limit! I guarantee you will be the “media specialist ” of the year….the children will love it, and this really is a lesson about the science of polymers. Be sure to take lots of pictures and remember….linking books to science is a magical thing! Enjoy!