Musical Insects

In this activity children will investigate how sounds are made and will attempt to make sounds of their own.

Description

Scientists have reconstructed the song of a cricket that chirped 165 million years ago throughout the Jurassic forest. A remarkably complete fossil of the prehistoric insect enabled the team to see the structures in its wings that rubbed together to make the sound. Just like modern bush crickets - also known as katydids - the Jurassic insects produced music with their wings. A 'plectrum' on one wing was dragged along a microscopic comb-like structure on the other. This produces a continuous chirp as the male insects rub or 'stridulate' their wings in a scissor-like motion like playing a tiny violin.

Children will investigate how sounds are made and will attempt to make sounds of their own.

Learning Objective:

- that sound is caused by vibration.

Children will learn:

- how to make a variety of sounds similar to those produced by insects. 

- how the cricket makes its sound. 

Primary upd8
Acknowledgements

These resources were initially developed in partnership with the Centre for Science Education, Sheffield Hallam University.