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ANTS TALK . . . NO, REALLY THEY DO. BUT IN BUGS@PLAY, A COLLECTION OF PUPPET PLAYS PERFECT FOR THE CLASSROOM, SO DO BUTTERFLIES, LADYBUGS, CORN EARWORMS, BEETLES, COCKROACHES AND MORE. THERE’S EVEN A SINGING GRASSHOPPER. BY LEARNING ABOUT THEMSELVES AND SOLVING BUG-SIZED PROBLEMS, ANN BLUM’S CHARMING CHARACTERS TEACH STUDENTS ABOUT HOW TO IDENTIFY INSECTS, THE INSECT LIFE CYCLE, INSECT DEFENSE STRATEGIES, AND EVEN THE WAYS THAT SOME INSECTS MAKE THE WORLD A BETTER PLACE FOR PEOPLE TO LIVE IN. IT’S A GREAT WAY TO COMPLEMENT AN ELEMENTARY GRADE SCIENCE CURRICULUM WITH FUN—SEAMLESSLY BLENDING IN LESSONS IN VOCABULARY SKILLS AND SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT. THE ANTS, BY THE WAY, TALK IN A LANGUAGE OF CHEMICAL SCENTS, EACH WITH ITS OWN PARTICULARY MESSAGE. BUT LET THEM TELL YOU ABOUT IT. AUTHOR BLUM INCLUDES HELPFUL LESSON NOTES TO AID TEACHERS AND PUPPET ARTISTS IN TALKING TO KIDS ABOUT THE INSECTS DEPICTED IN EACH PLAY.
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Ann Blum is a veteran educator and writer, retired from a career with the Carl Vinson Institute of Government at the University of Georgia. From Chicago, she is a graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She and husband Murray, a retired research professor of entomology, reside in Athens, Georgia.
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