Butterflies have got to be our absolute favorite unit study, and truthfully it has been an ongoing one for us no matter what else we are studying. A butterfly habitat sits on our desk, or sometimes hangs in the schoolroom window. Our shelves are loaded down with books that teach us about everything from butterfly eggs to butterfly plants. We have made our yard as butterfly friendly as we can by planting milkweed for the Monarchs as well as a variety of other plants like Salvia, Lavender, Firecracker plants, Lantana, and more. We have also put out butterfly puddlers and nectar- when you welcome them, they will come! I have a list of resources below for you to pull together your own unit study no matter what area you live in. Ours tends to focus on Monarchs as that is what is most prevalent in our area.
If you love butterflies as much as we do it is worth purchasing a good collection of books to learn about their habits, habitats, life cycles, and more. The kids are very likely to pull a book from the shelves to look up something, or even my little one to just look at pictures. Here are some books we have found to be very useful.
Flight of the Butterflies-Level 3 Reader
Hands on Activities– The kids favorite part of any unit study is when they get up and moving or get involved in a hands on project.
Build a butterfly puddler, I show you how here on Premeditated Leftovers.
Also on Premeditated leftovers you can check out my butterfly nectar– they love this stuff!
Lapbooks are always fun and a great way to preserve your work. Have an older child? Here are some FREE Butterfly printables that would be ideal to add to a butterfly lapbook for about middle school level.
Watch a video, this Youtube video gives you a great view of the entire life cycle. It covers terminology in a simple way.
Giant Butterfly Garden– This is a must if you want to observe butterflies, ours came with a certificate for free butterfly larvae but we have just plucked caterpillars straight from milkweed plants and given them fresh leaves every day with great success. This set also comes with a quality plastic set of the butterfly life cycle
Painted Lady Caterpillars with Food– If you have a habitat already but have not seen many caterpillars around the yard you can order these Painted Lady Caterpillars and food to observe the life cycle in action.
Monarch Dress up Wings – Encourage dramatic play with these beautiful wings. Get the kids moving while you read from a book and I guarantee they will take in more than you expect.
Check out all of our unit study resources:
Homeschool Unit Studies