Learning with Leaves – Fall Butterfly Craft

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The beginning of a new season always provides a wonderful opportunity for me to engage my daughters in discussions about change. I have found that a great way to do this is through fun and age appropriate activities that get us out in nature and talking about all the changes we see around us.

This year, as fall approached, I set out to look for a simple nature craft and came across this Fall Leaves Butterfly Craft here: http://www.notimeforflashcards.com/2009/08/fall-butterfly-craft.html. I loved that this craft was easy, adorable and convenient!

Below I have laid out a supplies list and simple step-by-step instructions for completing this craft. I also have provided a few ideas for initiating conversation on the cycle of seasons and change that you could use with your child(ren) as they work to complete this craft.

 Supplies needed:

  1. Cardboard
  2. Crayons or markers
  3. Scissors
  4. Tape
  5. Fall leaves

 Directions:

  • Gather the first four supplies listed above.
  • Then set out on a nature walk to collect two to four leaves per child.DSC_1112
  • Clip the stems off the leaves and set aside.
  • It is now time to craft the butterfly. First, draw a butterfly body on your cardboard.
  • Next, have your children color in the body and add eyes and a mouth.
    • You may want to help younger children by providing them the outline for this step.DSC_0994
  • The body is now ready to be cut out.
  • Once the body is cut out you will want to have your child flip the butterfly body over and tape the leaves (wings) and stems (antennas) to the back.DSC_1119
    • If you want a double leaf layer look (like my younger daughter created) simply layer two leaves on top of each other and tape them down.
  • Your butterfly is now complete!B-ButterflyCraft

Possible discussion starters:

  • While you are outside gathering the fall leaves engage your child’s senses by asking them what they notice about the leaves, trees and weather. Some simple questions you could ask are:
    • Do you notice anything different about the leaves? If so, what? What color are the leaves? Are they all the same colors? Why do you think that is?
    • What do you notice about the amount of leaves on the trees?
    • How does it sound to jump in a pile of leaves?
    • How does the weather feel today? Does it feel warmer or cooler compared to the last few weeks?
  • Take a moment to discuss the different seasons we have. Ask them questions like:
    • What season is it right now? What are all the different seasons we have? Which one came before and after the season we are in right now?
  • Have your child consider what they think would happen if we didn’t have seasons. Ask them what they think things would be like if it was always hot and sunny…or cold and wet/snowy. Spend a few moments helping them to see the effect it would have on our earth if the seasons never changed.
  • Ask them to name other things that change. Gently point out that there are always things changing around us. Have them explain why they think it is important to experience change.FallButterflyCraft
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