Our Wonderful World by Emery Lewis Howe is a rich nature study book available for free download covering backyard neighbors, feathered friends, garden life, four-footed comrades, and the earth and its neighbors. By covering one chapter a week, there are 32 weeks worth of lessons. Enjoy the complete series!
The lesson on spiders is broken into two parts; the first part focused on the spider’s web, and this lesson on its nest, or eggs.
- The lesson refers to “the laws which God has planted” in the spider’s being. These laws of nature, often referred to as Natural Law, make an interesting study for older students. Questions that can be answered, discussed and written about include where did these laws come from? and what type of laws are there? What document contains the phrase “The Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God”? To help answer these questions, you’ll find resources below.
- Read Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White. This wonderful children’s book accurately describes a spider laying its eggs, and the newly-hatched spiders spinning their first strong web to fly off. See additional resources below.
- Make a booklet of those spiders mentioned that may cause medical difficulties. See resources below for diagram of black widow and tarantula.
- Listen to a tarantella.
- More of the spider’s story from the Book of Knowledge:
Spiders are able to spin at a very early age. Soon after they emerge from the silken egg sac, most baby spiders are possessed by a strange wanderlust. They climb to the top of plants and fences and then, after allowing the breeze to pull out long streamers from their spinnerets, they let go and are floated into the air. This is called ballooning and it is practiced by small spiders of all ages. In this fashion they attain great heights and sometimes fly long distances. Flying spiders have dropped upon the rigging of ships more than two hundred miles from the nearest land. During the fall months the flying activities of spiders are especially noticeable. Ballooning carries spiders swiftly into areas where they can begin new colonies.
“Spiders and Their Airy Webs,” The Book of Knowledge
- You’ll find resources below for copying the egg sacs into a notebook. These pages can make a notebook useful for later identification.
Ready to go outdoors? The Handbook of Nature study covers spider eggs beginning on page 446.
- Instead of writing a letter as the lesson suggests, make a written (or oral, depending on age) narration to keep in the notebook.
- Use the Bible verses listed for copywork or dictation.
God & Natural Law
A nice summary from Answers in Genesis.
Declaration of Independence
The document that contains the phrase “the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God.”
This page from Enchanted Learning features tarantula and the black widow spider diagrams.
Spiders of Medical Importance
Lists several spiders that may cause medical problems.
Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White
This wonderful children’s classic includes the story of a spider laying its eggs, and the newly-hatched spiders spinning their first strong web to fly off. Very nice tie-in.
Be Nice to Spiders by Margaret Bloy Graham
Loved this book as a child, so you know it has been around for a long time! By the same author and illustrator as Harry the Dirty Dog, Be Nice to Spiders tells the story of the important role a spider played in keeping the animals at the zoo happy. Very cute reminder of at least one benefit of spiders.
Units & Lesson Plans
Literature Unit Study Based on Charlotte’s Web
From Homeschool Helper Online.
Life Cycle of a Spider
Nice addition to notebook.
Egg Sac Photos and Identification
Photos and spider information for notebook and identification.
Not free, but low-cost and very well done 71-page notebooking/lapbooking resource for summing up from Notebooking Nook. Includes life cycle, benefits of spiders to humans, and spiders harmful to humans, along with thirteen other activities.