In this interdisciplinary class, K-12 teachers will be given an overview of insect biodiversity; discover their cultural significance throughout history; use microscopes to explore a termite's microbiome and how it relates to their behavior; learn the basic rules of biological illustration (with the help of some colored pencils); and take behind-the-scene tours of Dr. Ware's laboratory and of the invertebrate archive, which houses 24 million specimens representing 500,000 species.
Jessica Ware is an associate curator in invertebrate zoology at the American Museum of Natural History. Dr. Ware’s research focuses on the evolution of behavioral and physiological adaptations in insects, with an emphasis on how these occur in Odonata (dragonflies and damselflies) and Dictyoptera (termites, cockroaches, and mantises). She holds a BSc from the University of British Columbia in Canada, and a PhD from Rutgers, New Brunswick. Dr. Ware is the past president of the Worldwide Dragonfly Association and serves as current president of the Entomological Society of America. She was recently awarded a PECASE medal from the US government for her work on insect evolution.