Learning about butterflies
There is nothing more special than the life cycle of a butterfly! To visualize the stages we recreated the magic. As with most living beings we started with the egg which then grows into the caterpillar, also called the larva; the worm-like stage of the butterfly. This part of the cycle gave us lots of material to work with! In story time we read ‘The Crunching Munching Caterpillar’ by Sheridan Cain, which got us thinking about a caterpillar who wishes nothing more than to fly.
You can’t see it now because it’s been gobbled up, but we made a caterpillar pizza in cooking class! All of us Green Groupers rolled little pizzas and then linked them together to make a big caterpillar. To get the picture- tomatoes and olives make for great big eyes and slices of red peppers turn into little caterpillar legs!
Here’s something you can see on the display- a caterpillar we made out of yarn. Don’t eat it! After the caterpillar grows to it’s biggest size it then transforms into the chrysalis or pupa. We used paper mache to create this stage. Unlike other animals hibernating in their caves the caterpillar inside the pupa is working away to evolve into its next stage of life. Suddenly, birds are tweeting, the snow is melting and the air smells fresh and alas spring has arrived! When we went on a nature walk we even found a pupa on a branch. The pupa had a tiny hole in it, which must’ve been how the butterfly came out of its cocoon. We brought it inside to put on the ‘finding out table’ for everybody to check out. Hard work has paid off and the butterfly is born! This beautiful creature so naturally colorful and decorative is now flying around fluttering from one flower to the next.
From the butterfly we learned about symmetry and patterns and once again applied it to eatable art! Ask a Green Grouper how to make a butterfly out of a couple of pretzels, a stick of licorice, honey, a rice cracker, and pastels. Here’s a hint: even though it’s sweet and delicious this gooey food can be used as glue. (recipe found in Candy Construction: http://www.scribbleshop.com/content/candy-cnst-storey-publishing) Hope you had as much fun as we did learning about the butterfly’s life cycle!
Some fun facts about butterflies:
Butterflies range in size from a tiny 1/8 inch to a huge almost 12 inches.
Butterflies can see red, green, and yellow
Did you know that butterflies need the warmth of the sun to enable them to fly?
The caterpillar stage lasts about 9 to 14 days.