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Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Kids Craft: Fluttering Butterflies

kids craft butterflies mobile hanging yard decoration

Ana is learning all about insects in school. Especially fascinating among them is, naturally, the butterfly. After numerous little notebooks of butterfly life-cycle and little paintings of butterflies, all cut-out, brought back from school, it seemed like a good time to extend ourselves even if to just reach saturation...

So, we looked up a few butterflies with distinguishing features and therefore might be easier to remember:
  • Swallowtails (Papilionidae ): characterized by extended tails at the bottom of their wings.
  • The Monarch (Danaus plexippus): easily recognized by orange wings, outlined in black, and white spots on a black face, these have attained a sort of celebrity status in these parts
  • The Buckeye (Juonoia coenia): wings have orange bars, some white spots and very pronounced ocelli (pretend eyes), used to ward off predators

Thanks to Over In The Jungle, we all will remember the shiny blue morpho butterflies for sure... however, I probably won't remember any of them for long... maybe the above three since I am taking the trouble to type them up... and I doubt if Ana will remember much either.

But, while we were at it, we decided to do a small project of Fluttering Butterflies.

kids craft butterflies mobile hanging yard decoration

One soggy afternoon, looking longingly at the backyard, Ana said it would be nice to have butterflies fluttering by. And since none were gracing us with their presence, she said it would be fine to make up some pretend butterflies as a craft project.

How could I let such a sweet idea pass by?

kids craft butterflies mobile hanging yard decorationItems Used: Tracing paper, printer, crayons, clear contact sheet, scissors, scrap yarn, tape.
  1. Look up free printable butterfly coloring pages online and print out a few different ones on tracing paper
  2. Color them in; then, "laminate" using clear contact sheet, and cut out
  3. Attach string/yarn to hang them up

I liked the transparency that tracing paper had, rather than the regular copy paper. Ana seemed very happy with the results and couldn't wait to show it to Appa when he got home. She was particular about the order in which they should be strung together :)

Just watching these colorful pretend butterflies in the backyard brings a smile. With stormy weather and high winds, I doubt if these will stay as beautiful. No matter.

Another approach we tried is to print out the butterflies on tracing paper as above, then using crayon shavings and wax paper like we did for melted crayon stained glass project. Because of the nature of the crayons and the way they melt, this produces interesting results, but, not easily controlled... it ended up more blotchy than we wanted.

kids craft butterflies mobile hanging yard decoration melted crayon stained glass

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5 Comments:

At 12:18 PM, Blogger Playing by the book said...

What a great project! Your butterflies look lovely. Do you know Waiting for wings by Lois Ehlert? It's one of our favourite butterfly books.

 
At 1:43 PM, Blogger Sheela said...

Oh yes, the butterfly book! We went through Lois Ehlert phase - like I do when I discover a book by an author that we enjoyed, I try to check out other works by the same :) Her Leaf Man was an inspiration for some Fall leaf projects; Color Zoo, Market Day, and Fish Eyes were quite appealing visually when Ana was about 3-ish...

 
At 10:34 PM, Blogger artnavy said...

http://abouttimenow.blogspot.com/2010/03/chennai-chronicles-v-juicy-chat.html

pl pick up the award

 
At 3:38 AM, Blogger ChoxBox said...

hey i forgot to tell you. We did the melted crayon project - idea taken from you, and made some swell flowers which were used to make a birthday card. Thanks!

 
At 1:20 PM, Anonymous Deepti said...

It is an awesome idea - Really needed to get us into Spring - Thanks for shraing

 

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