Insect Discovery

Dear teachers, educators, and friends of Flandrau:

Due to increased concerns regarding the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) and in the interest of the health of our visitors, staff and community, Flandrau is temporarily closed until further notice.

All Field Trips and Discovery Programs are cancelled until we can reopen.

We will continue to work closely with the University of Arizona to coordinate our efforts and will plan to reopen to the public when the time is right. Please continue to check our website and look for announcements via email and social media for updates. We look forward to welcoming you back to Flandrau in the future.

Stay healthy!
Flandrau Science Center & Planetarium

Sponsored by the Department of Entomology in collaboration with the Arizona Cooperative Extension and 4-H, Insect Discovery is an outreach program designed to teach elementary students science concepts through hands-on activities using live and preserved insects. Workshop stations are inquiry-based activities that address topics such as biological diversity, adaptation, and life cycles. In addition to field trips, the program provides classroom visits, outreach events, teacher training and lesson plans.

Workshop Stations

  • Butterflies and Lifecycles: Experience insects at your fingertips!  Students at this station can walk into a giant cage containing live butterflies.  They will take notes on butterfly behavior while forming a special connection with these beautiful insects.  This station focuses on strengthening observational skills, developing data collection techniques, and increasing students' comfort in handling insects.

    Science Standards, Life Science Strand: Concept 1 - Characteristics of Organisms, Concept 2 – Life Cycles

  • Cricket Experiment: Become a scientist for a day!  This station uses crickets to introduce students to the scientific method.  Students have the opportunity to design an experiment, make predictions, collect their own data, graph the results, and discuss their conclusions.  Through this research experience, they will learn about how insects interact with their environment, and discover some fascinating facts about crickets, too!

    Science Standards, Inquiry Process Strand: Concepts 1 - 4

  • Adaptation: This station explores some ways that insects can adapt to their environment.  Students will play a game that demonstrates the advantage of camouflaged coloration and introduces a process leading to this adaptation.  They will see some real-world examples of extraordinary "cryptic critters" -- in photos and alive!

    Science Standards, Life Science Strand: Concept 4 – Diversity, Adaptation & Behavior

  • Decomposers: Insects and other animals have different roles in the environment depending on what they eat. In this station we find and appreciate some of the many decomposer organisms that eat dead material and turn it into soil. We also get to dig in the dirt, which is always fun!

    Science Standards, Life Science Strand: Concept 2 – Life Cycles, Concept 3 – Organisms and Environments

Program Details

Audience: 1st - 3rd grade

Group Size: 10 - 30 students

Offered: Spring Semester, Tuesday and Wednesdays; two workshops (up to 30 students each) offered simultaneously both days at 9:15am

Start Time: 9:15am

Duration: 2 hours


  • Students: $50 for up to 10 students; additional students are $5 each
  • Teachers: Free
  • Chaperones: Up to 5 free chaperones; Additional chaperones $5.00 each
  • Discounted rate available for Title I Schools

We welcome homeschool groups! 1 lead parent/teacher and 5 chaperones per group is free. Additional adults will be charged for admission beyond the 5 for the workshop. Please Note: Due to room capacity in the Discovery Labs, your chaperones and/or siblings will be limited to only 5 in the room at a time.

Optional Add-Ons

Science Center Exhibits:
$2.00 per person

Planetarium Show:
$3.00 per person


For information about scheduling programs, please contact:
Noel Hensley

For more Information about workshop content and activities:
Kathleen Walker,,

All Discovery Programs require a Request Form Submission; Please note that this is a request form only. Confirmation of your Discovery Workshop request is dependent on availability. Due to the high volume of discovery requests, it can take up to 2 weeks to confirm your Discovery Workshop.