Creepy Crawlies

Early Literacy Tip

Talking to your children about the books you are reading allows you to introduce or discuss new words and concepts. Asking them follow-up questions encourages them to use the new vocabulary.


Library Books


Big Bug by Henry Cole Big Bug by Henry Cole
Beginning with a bug, various objects are revealed as being big and small in comparison with other objects on a farm under the big, big sky.

Bob and Otto by Robert O. Bruel
Otto the worm is shocked to discover that his best friend Bob is actually a caterpillar who emerges one day as a butterfly.

Bugs! Bugs! Bugs! by Bob Barner
A nonsense rhyme introduces children to familiar bugs. The book includes a fun facts section.

The Fly by Petr Horacek
A funny look at the life of a fly who doesn't quite understand why no one likes him.

I Saw an Ant on the Railroad Track by Joshua Prince
Jack, a railroad switchman, frantically tries to save an ant who is heading straight into the path of an oncoming freight train.

The Icky Bug Alphabet Book by Jerry Palotta
This book introduces the characteristics and activities of insects and other crawly creatures from A to Z, beginning with the ant and concluding with the zebra butterfly.

If I Were an Ant by Amy Moses
A child imagines how much larger things such as crumbs, puddles, trees and even babies would seem to an ant.

Horsefly and Honeybee by Randy Cecil
Honeybee and Horsefly have a fight that results in each of them losing a wing and being forced to walk, but when they are both captured by hungry Bullfrog their only hope of escape is to work together.

Some Bugs by Angela DiTerlizzi
From butterflies and moths to crickets and cicadas, a rhyming exploration of backyard-bug behavior.

Yoo-Hoo Ladybug! by Mem Fox
Invites the reader to search for Ladybug, who loves to hide.


(These non-fiction books may not be developmentally appropriate for every preschooler.  You know your children—if any of the text is beyond where you think they are, you can still use the book by discussing the pictures and illustrations.)

Bugs Are Insects by Anne Rockwell
This book explains how to tell what an insect is and what it isn't and introduces the fascinating world of the tiny creatures that live in our backyards.

A House Spider’s Life by John Himmelman A House Spider’s Life by John Himmelman
This book examines the life cycle of a house spider in a story format.

It’s a Good Thing There Are Insects by Allan Fowler
With striking, full-color photos and just the right amount of text, this series involves young readers as they discover intriguing facts about insects and why they are important to our world.

A Taste of Honey by Nancy Elizabeth Wallace
A little bear and her father trace the origins of honey from the jar all the way back to the bees that first produced it.

Wonderful Worms by Linda Glaser
Wonderful Worms encourages an appreciation for the small creatures of the earth by explaining the vital role that earthworms play in the planet's ecosystem. The book also contains informative charts and cross-section illustrations of the worm's underground environment.


Have fun with finger puppets.

Songs and Fingerplays

Eight Ants

One ant two ants, three ants four.
Our picnic is their grocery store.
Five ants, six ants, seven ants, eight.
They are crawling on my plate!
Eight ants, seven ants,
Stomp around.
Six ants, five ants
On the ground.
Four ants, three ants,
On the run!
Two ants, one ant,
No more fun.

Five Little Ladybugs 

Five little Ladybugs climbing up a door,
One flew away then there were four.
Four Little ladybugs sitting on a tree,
One flew away then there were three.
Three little ladybugs landed on a shoe,
One flew away and then there were two.
Two little ladybugs looking for some fun,
One flew away and then there was one.
One little ladybug sitting in the sun,
She flew away and then there were none.

Head, Thorax, Abdomen
(Tune: “Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes")

Head, thorax, abdomen, abdomen,
Head, thorax, abdomen, abdomen,
Eyes and mouth, antenna too,
Six legs and that’s an insect for you!

The Little Cricket
(Point to one finger at a time.)

The first little cricket played a violin.
The second little cricket joined right in.
The third little cricket made a crackly song.
The fourth little cricket helped him along.
The fifth little cricket cried, "Crick-crick-cree.
The orchestra is over and it's time for tea?”

Roly Poly Caterpillar

Roly-poly caterpillar (wiggle right pointer finger)
Into a corner crept (place right pointer finger in left cupped hand)
Spun around himself a blanket (spin around)
Then for a long time slept. (place head on folded hands)
Roly-poly caterpillar (wiggle right pointer finger)
Wakening by and by, ("stretch" right pointer finger)
Found himself with beautiful wings
Changed to a butterfly (flutter arms like wings)

We're Going on a Bug Hunt
(Tune: "We're Going on a Bear Hunt")

We're going on a bug hunt!
We're going to catch some big ones.
What a sunny day!
Are you ready? OK!

Oh my! A bee!
A black & yellow bee,
Flying over the flowers.

We're going on a bug hunt!
We're going to catch some big ones.
What a sunny day!
Are you ready? OK!

Oh, my! An ant!
A tiny, black ant,
Crawling through the grass.

We're going on a bug hunt!
We're going to catch some big ones.
What a sunny day!
Are you ready? OK!

Oh, my! A grasshopper!
A big, green grasshopper,
Hopping around the tree.
Boing, boing...

We're going on a bug hunt!
We're going to catch some big ones.
What a sunny day!
Are you ready? OK!

Oh, my! A butterfly!
A pretty, orange butterfly,
Floating in the sky.
Whoosh, whoosh...

We're going on bug hunt!
We're going to catch some big ones.
What a sunny day!
Are you ready? OK!

Oh my! A spider!
A big black spider,
Creeping on the tree. Creep, creep...



Childcare Lounge—Insects and Bugs Theme
Everything Preschool—Bugs Theme
Kid Activities—Worm Theme
Preschool Express—Worm Theme
Preschool Plan It—Bugs and Insects
Teaching Heart—Spider Theme

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Most Popular Picturebooks

That is not a good idea! Goldilocks and the three dinosaurs. If you give a cat a cupcake. The pigeon needs a bath! If you give a mouse a cookie.

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