Summer often comes with a lighter homeschool schedule for our family. Thankfully, that lighter schedule opens up room for unit studies that we can’t squeeze in throughout the rest of the school year. This year, we kicked off this time of summer learning with a butterfly unit study.
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Little did we know that our butterfly unit study would be something our entire family would enjoy! Here’s a look at the resources we used to study these miraculous creatures:
Butterfly Unit Study Resources
The foundation of our butterfly unit study was our Insect Lore Butterfly Garden. We started with a cup of live caterpillars, watched them become chrysalides, and, one by one, emerge into butterflies. It was a remarkable thing to witness and share as a family.
This butterfly garden made our unit study come to life and made it more hands-on than we’d ever experience otherwise. From the moment we opened the box and put our caterpillar cup on the shelf, the kids were absorbed in what was happening. They watched and waited through the entire process and even had a hard time letting go once our painted ladies were ready for release. It was special for all of us and something I expect we’ll do over and over again.
Butterflies also made an appearance in Prissy’s school time over the course of our study. We used Homeschool Share’s printable pack for The Very Hungry Caterpillar and she loved every minute of it. It was based on her favorite Eric Carle book and covered the butterfly life cycle, days of the week, sequencing, nutrition, and much more.
What to Read for Your Butterfly Unit Study
Books also played a major part in our butterfly unit study. Like we often do, the first book we turned to was DK’s Encyclopedia of Animals. We also spent a good bit of time reading through the butterfly information found in Insect World, an older book we found at the library.
My kids are five years apart, so I had to look for different kinds of butterfly books when I was rounding up the rest of our reading choices. We already had a couple of butterfly picture books for Prissy, but ended up borrowing most of The Boy’s butterfly books from the library.
- A Butterfly is Patient – a beautifully illustrated living book about the butterfly life cycle
- Where Butterflies Grow – good for all ages
- It’s a Butterfly’s Life – good for all ages
- Butterflies – good for all ages, but probably more enjoyable for younger kids
- Flutter, Butterflly! – best for younger kids
- The Very Hungry Caterpillar – best for younger kids
What to Watch for Your Butterfly Unit Study
We were also able to work butterflies into our TV time over the course of our study. Here’s a look at what we watched:
- Wild Kratts – Season 1, Episode 8 Voyage of the Butterflier
- The Story of the Butterfly
- Caterpillars, Butterflies, and Moths
- Butterfly in a Box (no information, but great for observation)
I was thrilled to find all of these butterfly videos on Amazon Prime. I added them to our watchlist and incorporated them throughout our study. Easy peasy. (You know that Prime membership is useful for more than getting your Downton Abbey fix, right?)
Butterfly Art to Create
We can’t tackle a unit study in our homeschool without adding an art component. We kept our art time fairly simple with our butterfly unit study, but we still had loads of fun creating. If you follow along on Instagram, you may have seen my little one working on fingerprint caterpillars, an idea we found in Fingerprint Bugs.
Both of my kiddos jumped in on the rest of our butterfly-inspired art. They enjoyed a few drawing tutorials and butterfly pastel projects. If you’re looking for some butterfly art ideas for your unit study, here are some to consider:
- Butterfly art ideas from Art for Kids Hub: origami, watercolor, pastels, & drawing tutorials
- Art for Beginners: Drawing and Painting a Monarch Butterfly with Oil Pastels
- Color Mixing Butterflies from Our Unschooling Journey (Pin it HERE)
- Coffee Filter Butterflies from Red Ted Art (Pin it HERE)
- Crafts with Dry Leaves from lanavedelbebe.com (Pin it HERE)
Have you enjoyed a butterfly unit study with your kids? I’d love for you to share your experience in the comments below.