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Additional Core Ties

English Language Arts Kindergarten
Speaking and Listening Standard 1 a.


Utah LessonPlans


Students will read and observer ants to discover how ants are the same and different than people.



One per class:

  • 3' x 5' butcher paper mural with ant hill, tunnels, rooms, grass and sky (see illustration)
  • Ant Cities, by Arthur Dorros

One per student:

Additional Resources


  • Ant Cities, by Arthur Dorros; ISBN 0064450741
  • What Is an Insect?, by Susan Canizares and Mary Reid; ISBN 0590397907
  • Backyard Detective, by Nic Bishop; ISBN 0-439-51839-3
  • The World of Ants, by Melvin Berger; ISBN 1-56784-008-6

Additional Media

Background for Teachers

Our backyards are full of animals. Insects are everywhere and come in many sizes, shapes, and colors. They eat, have homes, and have specific characteristics. Ants are insects. Ants have three body parts: the head, thorax, and abdomen. Ants are like people in many ways. Have several books about ants available.

Intended Learning Outcomes

1. Demonstrate a positive learning attitude.
5. Understand and use basic concepts and skills.
6. Communicate clearly in oral, artistic, written, and nonverbal form.

Instructional Procedures

Invitation to Learn
To create interest in learning about ants, the teacher guides the class in a discussion about how ants are different and the same as people. These ideas should be listed on a chart divided in half with the headings “How We Are the Same” and “How We Are Different.” After students have given initial observations, additional questions can be asked.

  1. Do ants have homes similar to ours?
  2. Do ants take care of their young?
  3. Do ants have jobs?
  4. Do ants have babies?
  5. How do ants get their food?
  6. Are ants strong?

Instructional Procedures

  1. Read Ant Cities by Arthur Dorros.
  2. Have students add ideas to the chart on how ants are the same and different than people.
  3. Model the three parts of an ant.
  4. Make a class mural of an ant city. Prepare the background for the mural using butcher paper. It should include an underground view of the different rooms, tunnels, ant hill, top grass, and sky.
  5. Give each student a 3” x 3” piece of white construction paper. Students will draw their own ant, including the three body parts, with crayons. Have each student cut out his/her ant and place it anywhere that is appropriate on the mural.
  6. Have the class work together to label each room and review its uses.
  7. Start a classroom ant farm. See Additional Resources for ordering information.


Additional Math Activities

  1. Pass out the Ant City handout. Each room has a number in it. Have students count out the correct number of plastic ants for each room. Switch with a partner to check each other’s papers.
  2. Have students play Who Can Find the Anthill. Each student has his/her own handout. Place one plastic ant on each numbered starting spot. Each student rolls a die. Whichever ant is on the corresponding number is moved one stepping stone toward the anthill. Game continues in this manner until an ant reaches the anthill.
  3. Use plastic ants for different addition or subtraction activities.

Additional Language Arts Activities
Make a class book entitled, An Ant Can.

  1. Brainstorm with the class all the different activities ants do. List these on the board.
  2. Have each student chose one idea. Give each student a piece of construction paper. Have students use an ant stamp to illustrate a picture.
  3. Label the page: An ant can __________.
    build carry dig cut
    eat groom take out trash  
    fight sleep
    babysit cut leaves  
    help others listen milk aphids    
  4. Create a cover and bind all the pages together.

Small Motor Activities

  1. Use Model Magic to sculpt an ant. Remember to have three body parts.
  2. Use markers to paint it.

Family Connections

  • Invite students to begin to look for different insects that may be in their backyard. Have them bring them to school in appropriate containers.
  • Have students practice writing words that use the “an” family (e.g., fan, can, man, etc.).

Assessment Plan

As students engage in each activity observe their understanding of how ants live. Math activities assess counting, one-to-one correspondence, and number recognition. Writing skills and beginning sounds can be assessed as students make and read the class book.

Created: 09/10/2004
Updated: 10/31/2022