Wesselman Woods Nature Preserve

Wesselman Woods Nature Preserve

Friday, September 21, 2012


Fly Butterflies, Fly!  We had a blast learning about caterpillars and butterflies!  There are so many fun things to do with butterflies it was hard to choose, but these are the ones we did.

First we learned the basics of butterflies including their lifecycles from egg to caterpillars to chrysalis to butterfly.  I used the images provided by Preschool Post to illustrate the stages for the kids. 

The kids got to see a simulation of the last stage (chrysalis to butterfly) first-hand with my tissue paper chrysalis and Folkmanis monarchbutterfly finger puppet .  I got the idea from Classic Play.   It took a week’s prep leaving dry time between each coat of tissue and Modge Podge, but I was well worth it when I saw the look of wonder and amazement on those kids’ faces when they tore open the chrysalis and a butterfly came out!  It still gives me goose bumps!    

Next we practiced being butterflies with our new friend using dancing scarves and dancing to “Butterfly” on Mary Jo Huff’s Chicken Fun CD.  Mary Jo is from our town and if you haven’t had the pleasure of her various CDs and DVDs, please check her out.  She is just wonderful!

Next we read “TenLittle Caterpillars” Bill Martin Jr. (Author), Lois Ehlert (Illustrator).  Eric Carle’s “Very Hungry Caterpillar” would have also been good, but I think most kids have read that one and I wanted to introduce them to a different one.  The kids loved it.

Finally I ended with a flannel board rhyme I discovered (and copied!) from Flannel Friday friend Miss. Mary at Miss Mary Liberry .  The rhyme can be found in “StorytimeMagic: 400 Fingerplays, Flannelboards, and Other Activities”  by Kathy Macmillan and Christine Kirker.  

I love it because it moves through caterpillars (I used a die cut for the shapes) ...

to chrysalis (I copied the shape from Miss. Mary) ...

and butterflies (I got them from Michael’s end-of-summer clearance).  

After they were done with their craft, the kids were invited to act out the stages of a butterfly’s life using a small white sheet (for the egg stage); striped sheet (for the caterpillar); green sheet for the chrysalis stage and butterfly wings.  The kids took turns being each stage by wrapping themselves in a sheet and acting it out.  We had quite a few butterflies flying around by morning’s end!
Sharon at Rain Makes Applesauce is hosting Flannel Friday this week. Stop by and check out more great flannel fun! 
Sources:  http://www.preschool-plan-it.com/caterpillars-and-butterflies.html

1 comment:

  1. I love that you do storytimes at a nature center. How cool is that?!