Gracen Raises Butterflies: They’re Here!

IMG 9551IMG 9557IMG 9553When I saw that the awesome teachers’ store in our hometown, Vernon Teach & Learn, was selling butterfly larvae, I jumped on the opportunity and immediately put an order through by phone.  Now while I’m well aware that some people may think raising butterflies in your home is a tad on the crazy side, I actually think it’s pretty awesome.  It’s something I’ve done with my Kindergarten classes in the past and the process is nothing short of amazing.  For a child to be able to witness tiny caterpillars grow, build chrysalises, and emerge as butterflies up close and personal all in a span of a few weeks is pretty special.  I can’t wait to share the experience with Grae.  Ten fuzzy little caterpillars (two of which will be adopted by a friend tomorrow) arrived to our doorstep today and we couldn’t be more excited.

To order butterfly larvae of your own, contact Vernon Teach & Learn.  They are incredibly helpful and kind, and our caterpillars arrived here to Vancouver the day after ordering.  Their larvae packages can be found here.

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6 thoughts on “Gracen Raises Butterflies: They’re Here!

    1. Hah! Fun, right Carolyn?! With this particular kit, you can keep them in the container they’re shipped in until they form chrysalises, but we chose to separate them each into their own container as I’ve done in the past (you can see that process here: http://mamapapabubba.com/2013/05/09/gracen-raises-butterflies-the-caterpillar-transfer/). Once they are in their chrysalises, you take them out of the container and hang them in a butterfly hut (our DIY version coming soon!) They emerge as butterflies and fly around in the hut until you let them free. :)

  1. What a fantastic idea!! I would love to do this for my niece and nephew. Did you follow a lesson or anything specific like a book, worksheets, etc. when teaching it to your kindergarteners? How do you teach/explain to a child of Gracens age about all the stages/life cycle? I would never think to do this with a child this young ( my nephew is 2) but I think he would love it!!

    1. Thanks, Leah! No, I didn’t really follow a specific book or program when teaching my Kindergarten kids about butterflies… I’ve always been more of a create my own hands-on lessons kind of teacher (hence my very few hours of sleep while teaching – hah!) Scholastic does have some great butterfly resources though, so check them out. Evan-Moor also has some great life cycle resources – many of which are available as instant download e-books. :) As for Gracen, we read a lot of books. Fiction books like Eric Carle’s The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Scholastic’s Caterpillar to Butterfly and Butterfly Life Cycle all do a great job at introducing the topic. But as with my students, I find the best learning takes place simply by observing the process that’s unfolding in our house and talking about it along the way. I bet your nephew would LOVE it! :)

  2. Mine came in their own separate container… we will let our butterflies go this afternoon… I feel sad in a way, but its been a great experience for the children in my Dayhome…

    1. So cool, Nora! I know what you mean about release day being a little bit sad… You’ve taken such good care of them and watched them constantly for several weeks and then you’re setting them free and hoping they thrive out there in the big world all by themselves. It’s happy and sad all at once. :)

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