Creepy, crawly and cool! Insects are amazing, and you’ll want this parts of an insect worksheet to start off your study of insects. Then crawl over and check out more Free Insect Worksheets for Kids!
With the warm weather outside, this is the perfect time to get into bugs.
The basic parts of an insect
Insect bodies all have some things in common, and then they have some things specific to their genus or family.
All insects, for example, have 6 legs and antenna, and a body divided in 3. But some kinds of insects have wings and some have shells. Some have more prominent proboscis (sucking mouths), some have more prominent mandibles (biting mouths), and some have just labium (sponging mouths).
Every insect has 3 main body parts — the head, the thorax and the abdomen.
The head of the insect is where the antenna, the compound eyes and the external mouth parts are. Mosquitos will have proboscis, beetles generally have mandibles, and houseflies have labium, as an example.
The thorax is the middle part of the insect, and it’s where the legs (and wings, if there are any) attach. All true insects have 6 legs – 3 on each side of the body. Some insects may have just 2 wings, and some may have 4.
The abdomen is the end part of the insect, and usually the largest and most recognizable. This is where the insect’s internal organs are usually contained, such as their digestive system or reproductive organs. The abdomen is reactive, and it will expand as the insect feeds.
Located either on the thorax or the abdomen are the spiracles, the breathing holes of the insect. And all true insects have exoskeletons, or skeletal systems on the outside of their bodies, made of chitin, a kind of biological plastic.
Recommended Bug Books for Kids
Bugs are incredible creatures, and your students will want more. Check out our favorite books and stories about bugs — from the exotic to the common.
Ultimate Bugopedia: The Most Complete Bug Reference Ever (National Geographic Kids)Bugs A to ZSuper Bug Encyclopedia: The Biggest, Fastest, Deadliest Creepy-Crawlers on the Planet (Super Encyclopedias)Hello, World! Backyard BugsBackyard Bugs: An Identification Guide to Common Insects, Spiders, and MoreEverything You Need to Know About Bugs
Recommended Bug Kits
And there’s nothing like studying real life bugs to get your kids excited. Grab one of these kits, and get out there to look at bugs
Insect Lore Deluxe Butterfly Garden Gift Set with Live Cup of Caterpillars HabitatRESTCLOUD Insect and Butterfly Habitat Cage Terrarium Pop-up 23.6 Inches TallOutdoor Explorer Kit & Bug Catcher Kit with Binoculars, Flashlight, Compass, Magnifying Glass, Backyard Exploration Critter Case, Butterfly Net and Backpack Great Children’s Toy Boys Girls Kids GiftsInsect Lore Original Ladybug Land with VoucherMoody Goat 19 – Pcs Outdoor Explorer Gear Play Set for Kids – Junior Adventurer Equipment Kit for Children – Exploration Toys with Binoculars, Bug Catcher, Magnifying Glass & BackpackWOWGEEK Critter Case Bug Bungalow Insect Catching Kit Toys Critter Cage Bug Catcher Storage Children Kids Nature Science Learning Backyard Exploration Sturdy Plastic Easy-Open Hatch (Color May Vary)
Download the insect worksheets below:
See the other activities in my 10 days of Biology Worksheets for Elementary Students series.