Preschoolers love learning about insects, and butterflies are often a favorite with my students. So I was inspired to share a classic butterfly life cycle craft with a little twist.
Make a Butterfly Life Cycle Craft Necklace with Kids
Green construction paper
Bow tie pasta
Liquid watercolors or food coloring
Hemp string (yarn or any kind of string would work)
Paper straw (a plastic straw would work as well)
Prior to the craft
This simple butterfly life cycle craft is perfect for extending children’s knowledge of caterpillars and butterflies. Before delving into the craft, be sure to read a variety of butterfly books with the kiddos. I also LOVE LOVE LOVE bringing caterpillars into the classroom for observation. I’ve done that for years and years, and I’m still amazed at the process!
How to Prep Before the Activity
The preschoolers can definitely help prep this craft! I would encourage them to do as much as possible, in fact!
Cut out four leaf shapes from the green construction paper.
Dye the pasta based on your preferences (and the preferences of the children, of course). I used liquid watercolors this time around, but I’ve also used food coloring or markers in the past. Use a hole punch to create a tiny paper circle for the egg.
Cut the straw into three equal pieces.
Print the butterfly life cycle words (unless you and the children are hand writing the words).
1. Glue each life cycle label on one green leaf. This is a great time to talk to the children about letters, letter sounds, comparing and contrasting word length, etc. For example, I might say, “Let’s see. I’m looking for the word ‘egg’. I know that it starts with the /e/ sound, and I know it’s the smallest word here.”
2. Glue each life cycle piece on the appropriate leaf. The tiny circle hole-punched from white paper is the egg, the rotini is the caterpillar, the shell pasta is the chrysalis, and the bow tie pasta is the butterfly. Again, this is a great time to touch on early literacy concepts. For example, I might say, “I’m trying to find the word that starts with the letter b.”
3. Once the previous items are dried, it’s time to assemble the life cycle necklace. The order should be egg, straw, caterpillar, straw, chrysalis, straw, and butterfly. The straws act as spacers for the life cycle pieces so that the life cycle is visible when the necklace is on.
Would your children/students like this butterfly life cycle craft necklace? I find preschoolers love creating items they can well! This craft acts as a necklace, a retelling piece, and a bit of science information all rolled into one!
Butterfly Lesson Plans
Save time and get right to the playful learning with our printable lesson plan sets. Each set includes over 30 playful learning activities related to the theme, and we’ve provided different versions for preschool classrooms and home preschool, so all activities are geared directly toward your needs.
Originally published March 25, 2015
More life cycle lesson ideas from the #PLAYfulpreschool team:
Butterfly Life Cycle Activities for Kids
Butterfly Life Cycle Story Board by Growing Book by Book
Life Cycle of the Butterfly in Art by Powerful Mothering
Playdough Butterfly Life Cycle by Learning 2 Walk
Butterfly Life Cycle Craft Necklace by Fun-A-Day
Frog Life Cycle Activities for Kids
Life Cycle of a Frog Sensory Bin by Mom Inspired Life
Fine-Motor Frog Life Cycle Craft by Live Over C’s
Frog Life Cycle Hopscotch by Tiny Tots Adventures
Frog Life Cycle Craft by Still Playing School
Praying Mantis Life Cycle Activities for Kids
Raise a Praying Mantis | Activities for Kids to Explore Life Cycles by The Educators’ Spin On It