Grasshopper Dissection

We have been examining insects from the outside and now it is time to go inside the animal. This dissection activity takes three class periods. Give each student a pair of Vinyl gloves and zipper style bag. Allow students to put their name and workgroup on the bags with permanent marker. Place an insect (grasshopper) on a supermarket meat tray and place it inside a gallon size zipper style bag.  For students that feel they can not go near the grasshopper, we have put a virtual dissecting manual on line. This virtual dissection was created by the eighth grade life science class for use with our sixth graders. This dissection manual includes photographs of all stages of the dissection. The manual includes instructions for opening the animals exoskeleton and viewing the inside of the animal. It is important to include photos of grasshoppers and drawings/photographs of the insides of the animals so that the children can make comparisons. These photographs can be obtained by your students by going on-line. At the end of each class period during the dissection process, give out wet wipes to clean tools and tables. Collect all animals and gloves in a box to keep materials from different classes separate from each other.

Supplies for this activity:

  • Worksheets
  • Science Journals
  • Crayons / Color Pencils
  • Insect (Grasshopper)
  • Vinyl gloves
  • Zipper style bags (for gloves and insects)
  • Styrofoam meat tray
  • Dissecting set (includes: scissors, probe [wood handle with needle], tweezers, ruler)

 Journal Worksheets 

Grasshopper Dissection

Microscope Sheet

Virtual Grasshopper Dissection