Tuesday, July 16, 2013

July Toddler Homeschool

Our focus this month of July has been BUTTERFLIES!  I have always enjoined teaching my students about butterflies and now I am delighted to introduced this topic of study to my toddler!  There is so much to learn and discuss about butterflies but our main focus is the life cycle and God's marvelous creation!

Our local flower/gardening nursery showcases a FREE butterfly house each summer.  Inside the butterfly house there are many different types of butterflies!  This year we spotted a caterpillar and a chrysalis.  This was a wonderful way to introduce this new topic to my toddler.  If you are interested in observing butterflies check your local zoo or nature center.  
My mother-in-law made this plastic (pretend) butterfly jar for me when I taught at my local elementary school.  I have had this for many years and children love to look at the butterflies!  All the items inside the jar can be found at your local craft store.  Simply place a piece of floral foam inside the lid.  Add your floral stems and leaves to the foam then hot glue the butterflies on the floral!  TA-DA an instant butterfly house!

My toddler has been very interested in a squirt bottle so we made a butterfly out of a coffee filter!  To make this butterfly have your child color/scribble a white coffee filter with markers.  Lay the coffee filter on a cookie sheet and spray with a squirt bottle.  The colors will "bleed" throughout the filter.  Allow it to dry then fold a pipe cleaner in half around the middle of the coffee filter.  Use the top of the pipe cleaner to twirl into antennas!
One of my favorite butterfly items is my monarch buttery finger puppet!  Everytime I have used this puppet children love it.  I like to wave it up and down as I read a butterfly story, it seems to be really engaging for children!!  Of course everyone wants to try the puppet so I let them make their own!  To make your own puppet print a butterfly on regular computer paper, color, cut out, then tape a popsicle stick to the back.  The thin paper waves gently just like the puppet!
Colossians 1:16 says, "For by Him all things were created."  When I think of how a caterpillar turns into a beautiful butterfly I cannot help but marvel at our magnificent Creator God!  Our homeschool group (7 children from 5 years - 3 months) took a field trip the butterfly house as well.  We each wore a butterfly foam sticker with Colossians 1:16 written on it.  My friend Amy from "Living and Learning at Home" prepared a wonderful poem/song to share titled, "All Things Bright and Beautiful" to help the children reflect on God and what he has made!

Lastly, we have read stories on the life cycle of a butterfly.  We have discussed four parts of the life cycle which are egg, caterpillar, chrysalis, then butterfly.

These are just some of the activities we have been focusing on this month!  Please check back each month as I feature new items added to our toddler homeschool!  I count it a privilege to be my children's teacher!  What a joy it is to see them learn and grow!

Happy Homeschooling!

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6 comments:

  1. Great Butterfly fun! Please come share it with us at Eco-kids Tuesday link up! http://likemamalikedaughter.blogspot.com/2013/07/eco-kids-tuesday.html

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  2. That is such a coincidence. We just got a butterfly kit and we are watching the caterpillars grow now. Its been awesome experience so far. I love the activities that you suggest and I am tempted to try the butterfly puppet. I would also recommend an awesome book on a naturalist who studied butterflies especially. The book is called "Summer Birds" (review here: http://www.stackingbooks.com/?p=454)
    -Reshama
    www.stackingbooks.com

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    Replies
    1. What a great activity! Thank you for the book recommendation!

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  3. We loved all your butterfly activities! They still love flying their butterflies and Mackenzie still sings that All Things Bright and Beautiful song every day =) Maybe she can sing it for sharing time next month!

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  4. It was a fun time! I love how we all bring something wonderful to homeschool group! I'm looking forward to the next one!

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