We released the last of our butterflies over the weekend. I’ve said it before, but I’ll say it again, this is one of my kids’ favorite activities! When the caterpillars arrived, they were only about a quarter inch long. We watched them grow and change, read many books about butterflies, and finally released them with hopes they would lay eggs in our garden.
My daughter loved drawing the butterflies and writing about everything they need. I didn’t ask her to write about them, it was just natural to her. When I asked her why she wanted to write about her butterflies, she told me that writing something down is the best way to remember things. (I think that’s brilliant!) She wanted to remember her butterflies when they had flown away. There were many important details in her writing. She made detailed observations and drew what she saw. She also thought about future needs (where the butterflies would live and what they would eat). She was writing for two purposes: 1)writing to remember an important event 2)writing to share information and instruction for others.
Life experiences and literacy go hand in hand. The excitement my kids have for learning is infectious. It stays with my children long after the butterflies have flown away.
If you are interested in raising your own caterpillars, check out the Insectlore catalog online. I’ll share more of our butterfly books later this week.