Tag Archives: butterflies

Beetles before butterflies

To prepare children to be close observers of the small animals that will be more easily seen in spring, I bring a container-habitat of beetles into the classroom during winter months. These Tenebrio beetles and larvae (widely known as “mealworms” although they are not worms) will live in the container, not colonize your classroom. Beetles […]

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Creating Children’s Science Books: A Lesson in Teamwork

When the National Science Teacher’s Association (NSTA) and the Children’s Book Council began spreading the word about their annual Outstanding Science Trade Books for Students K–12 list last November, I was thrilled to hear that my two 2014 titles with photographer Ellen Harasimowicz had made the cut. But when I clicked over to the OSTB […]

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Why Did Mrs. Carter Ask a Science Teacher to Create a Butterfly Garden?

It’s not every day that a science-teacher-turned-author gets the call that a former first lady of the United States could use his help. When that happened to me, I was uncertain if I would have anything to offer someone of Mrs. Carter’s stature. I dusted off my decades-old copy of her autobiography for a refresher […]

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Ecosystems outside the school door

Since it is now March and in my area we just had our 10th snow day, I am dreaming of planting seeds rather than actually planting them. What should the children plant in the raised bed school garden, a tiny sliver of ground that could not be incorporated into the play area because there is […]

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Young children using microscopes to see more

Magnifiers and microscopes can reveal small details that children otherwise might not notice. I would love to have a digital microscope in the classroom so children could really see the head of an insect such as a butterfly. No happy face, no smile, no eyes with pupils and eyelashes but many other interesting structures —setae (hair), […]

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Update on the success of using local butterflies

Yes, I will do this again next spring! We had caterpillars crawling out of the net housing, more caterpillars appearing than expected, wasps pupating next to their caterpillar host, a few deaths due to neglect, and beautiful (is there any other kind?) butterflies emerging from their chrysalids. My plan to introduce the butterfly life cycle […]

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Learning about the butterfly life cycle with local butterflies

This year I have challenged myself to use only local animals in the classroom, for budget and ecological reasons. Luckily for me and my students, Cabbage White and Black Swallowtail butterflies go through their life cycle to adulthood in our area before the end of the school year and can easily be found on collard […]

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