SHARED By: Laura Hayman, Three’s Teacher at York Avenue Preschool

Earlier this Spring, the three-year-old classroom at York Avenue Preschool completed a unit on the life cycle of a butterfly.

  1. Egg – The butterfly starts as an egg
  2. Larva – The caterpillar hatches from an egg and eats leaves or flowers. The caterpillar molts (loses its old skin) many times as it grows.
  3. Pupa – It turns into a chrysalis. This is a resting stage.
  4. Adult – A beautiful, flying butterfly emerges. There is no growth during this stage. This adult will continue the cycle and reproduce.

To help reinforce their learning, the children did an art project that represented the stages. This one piece prop can be used to “act out” the Life Cycle of a Butterfly.

What You’ll Need:

  • Green paper
  • Brown paper
  • White paper
  • Scissors
  • Colored Pipe Cleaners
  • Hole Puncher
  • Goggle eyes
  • Glue
  • Multi colored paint
  • Crayons and markers

What You’ll Do:

  1. Cut the white paper into a butterfly shape. Fold the butterfly in half.
  2. Cut the green paper into the shape of the folded butterfly. Glue it on one side. This will represent the caterpillar.
  3. Cut the brown paper into the shape of the other side of the folded butterfly. Glue it on the other side. This will represent the chrysalis.
  4. On the green sided paper, have the children color it so it represents a caterpillar. Glue on a goggle eye.
  5. On the brown sided paper, have the children turn it into a chrysalis.
  6. Open up the paper so the entire white butterfly is displayed. This is the fun part!
  7. On one half of the paper, drop different colors of paint onto the paper.
  8. Have the children fold the butterfly in half and rub, rub, rub.
  9. Count to three and open the paper.
  10. A beautiful, symmetrical butterfly will emerge.
  11. Add 2 eyes.
  12. Cut pipe cleaners in half and attach them to the top of the butterfly. This will represent antennas.
Now the children are ready to learn about the life cycle of a butterfly using their “all in one” prop!
Make it Monday Butterflies

“Little Butterfly” Song (Tune: Itsy, Bitsy Spider)
The little caterpillar snuggled on a leaf,
Spun a little chrysalis and then fell asleep.
While she was sleeping she dreamed that she could fly.
When she woke up she was a butterfly!