Beautiful Bugs and Incredible Insects Storytime

Recommended Books

Beetle Bop by Denise Fleming. New York: Harcourt, 2007: Beetles come in all shapes and sizes, and Fleming celebrates every one of them in this colorful ode to these hardy creepy-crawlies. With large, bright illustrations and a rhythmic chant of a text, this energetic book will be a hit in toddler and preschool storytimes.

Martina the Beautiful Cockroach: A Cuban Folktale by Carmen Agra Deedy. Atlanta, GA: Peachtree Publishers, 2007. In this Pura Belpre Honor Book, Martina the cockroach is 21 days old when she is ready to give her leg in marriage. On the advice of her grandmother, she splashes coffee on each of her suitors to see if they react angrily. In a delightful twist, she finds her perfect match, though not the way she expected to.

Songs and Rhymes

Bug Song

(to the tune of “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star”)

Creepy, crawly, on the ground

See the little worm we found.

Stickbugs, stinkbugs, dragonflies

Roly-polies rolling by.

Ladybug with wings so bright,

Butterflies flying out of sight.

Butterfly Rhyme

Crawling along on the ground (hunch on the floor)

A caterpillar could be found.

He munched and munched a leaf he tore (mime eating)

And ate until he could eat no more. (pat stomach)

He spun himself in a tight cocoon, (turn in a circle)

While we waited, would it be soon?

It shook and shimmied before my eyes, (shake and shimmy)

And out popped a beautiful butterfly. (spread arms out like wings)


Bumblebee Power

Cut large flower shapes out of different colors of construction paper. (Cut twice as many flowers as children in your storytime group.) Mix up the colors and lay them around the room. Explain to the children that they will be bumblebees and that they need to listen to the rhyme and find out what color flowers to fly to.

Buzz, buzz, bumblebee power,

Now fly to a red flower! (Repeat with different colors.)

To make the game more challenging, try this variation:

Buzz, buzz, bumblebee

A flower the color of milk is what I see.

Buzz, buzz, bumblebee power,

Now fly to that flower!

(Repeat with other objects of different colors.)

Variation: You could also write letters or numbers on your flowers to reinforce a different set of skills.

Buzz, buzz, bumblebee power,

Now fly to a letter A flower!

(or: Now fly to a number 6 flower!)


Monarch Butterfly

Materials: coffee filter, orange, brown, black, red and yellow washable markers, spring-loaded clothes pin, spray bottle.


  1. Decorate the coffee filter using the markers.
  2. Spritz the filter with water to allow the marker color to spread through the filter.
  3. Allow the coffee filter to dry.
  4. Gather the filter in the center of the filter and clip with a clothes pin.
  5. Decorate the clothes pin with eyes.

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