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Be a Rainbow

Word of the Week

Cellophane (sell-uh-fane): A thin, transparent material that lets light through. It comes from the French word cellulose meaning "consisting of cells" and the Greek word phane meaning "to bring in the light."

Bonjour and Yassou to you!

Happy Earth Day to you! With spring in the air and Earth Day on my mind, I got inspired by nature for this week's activity. Did you notice that this week's blog is called "Be a Rainbow"? That's exactly what you're going to do.

When I think of colorful insects, butterflies automatically pop into my mind! They're both beautiful and interesting, so I thought I'd start by sharing some fun facts.

  • The lifecycle of a butterfly has 4 stages: egg, caterpillar, pupa, and adult.

  • Butterflies are insects.

  • Butterflies and moths belong to the same group of insects- Lepidoptera.

  • Butterflies actually have four wings that look like two.

  • The vibrant colors and patterns on their wings are actually made up of tiny scales.

  • Butterflies need heat to fly. When you see them sitting in the sunshine, they are warming up their wings so they can fly. They can't fly if their body temperature is below 86 degrees!

  • Butterflies can see colors that humans can't!

  • They taste with their feet. You read that right!

  • Butterflies flap their wings 5 times per second.

  • There are approximately 17,500 different species of butterflies.

  • Like many insects, they have their skeletons on the outside of their body. This is called an exoskeleton, and it helps protect them from drying out.

Have I inspired you to become your own butterfly yet? This project is fun, and the directions are not specific. Your butterfly should be just as unique as you are! This project isn't complicated, but cutting through cardboard can be hard, so be sure to ask for some help! If you have an adult helping, a utility knife or box cutter will make the cutting a bit easier.

Supplies Needed

  • Cardboard, large enough to make wings

  • Scissors, marker, glue

  • Cellophane in a variety of colors (you pick!)

  • String or ribbon

  • Brads

  • Paint and paintbrush

Before you begin, look at some pictures of butterflies to create the shape of your wings. Draw one wing, cut out its basic shape, then use that wing to trace your second wing! Cut a small square of cardboard to attach your wings together later. Draw a design inside your wings. These are the areas that will be cut out. Your colorful cellophane will go in these "windows." Save those same shapes you just cut for your first wing to trace on your second wing. It doesn't have to be exact, but this will help the wings look more alike. If you want the wings painted, now's the time. They would look just as cute leaving them plain. Grab the small shapes again to cut your cellophane down to a similar size, then glue the cellophane in place! Once everything has dried, it's time to assemble! I chose to use brads to connect my wings to each side of the square piece of cardboard. Use your string or ribbon to attach your butterfly to your back.

Now, find a pretty, sunny spot! The colors look especially vibrant on pavement.

Voila! Be a beautiful butterfly!

Until next time. . .


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