We found a tree in our yard covered with these little caterpillars after a winter storm a couple weeks ago.
We carefully put one in a jar with some leaves. Malcolm calls him the caterpillar with “crazy hair” because of all his spikes.
Tim did some research, and thinks that he will actually turn into a moth rather than a butterfly, so we’ll see what happens!
The boys enjoy watching him every day, and are fascinated by the way he eats his leaves. We can even hear the crunch of him chewing if we’re really quiet.
And just the other night, we watched him attach himself to a branch. He hasn’t started cocooning yet, but we are hoping to see that soon.
We’ve been doing some neat projects and activities to learn about caterpillars and butterflies. I’m sharing some of our favorite resources below.
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Life Cycle of a Butterfly Resources
If you don’t have easy access to caterpillars where you live, you can get a fantastic butterfly kit here. It includes a voucher for you to order your caterpillars whenever you’re ready to use them with your kit.
We, of course, read The Very Hungry Caterpillar.
I found a great set of printable props for The Very Hungry Caterpillar here. I printed, colored, and laminated these props last summer, so we pulled them back out to use again. The boys love acting out the book as we read it together.
I downloaded these cut-and-paste activities about the butterfly life cycle from Lakeshore Learning.
We also watched the butterfly episode of The Magic Schoolbus on Netflix.
Some other great resources for learning about caterpillars and The Very Hungry Caterpillar:
- Here is a cute idea to make Very Hungry Caterpillar lacing cards.
- Creating the life cycle of a butterfly with Legos. We might still do this activity because I think the boys would love it.
- And here is a whole printable pack of Very Hungry Caterpillar activities.
I also made the boys a set of felt butterfly life cycle pieces to play with. You can see the tutorial here.
Here are even more fun caterpillar & butterfly books and activities you can use: