Saturday, December 7, 2013

PreSchool Storytime: Flutterby Butterfly!

 A look at the life cycle of the butterfly, celebrating individual differences, nature and change, with music, movement and a dash of sign language!

Opening music: Morning Magic -730 Bartels track #4 onward or "Butterfly" -- track #9 on Bari Koral Family Rock Band's Anna and the Cupcakes

Pop-up version : Very Hungry Caterpillar – Eric Carle (can also use regular version or do this as a flannelboard using the Folkmanis caterpillar/butterfly puppet.  I made a flannel “chrysalis pouch” and tucked the caterpillar inside and turned it inside-out for a magic transformation!) – also used counting cards and had kids anticipate the days of the week.

Action Song: Roly Poly Caterpillar (lyrics to all songs & flannelboards follow)

Bob and Otto – Robert & Nick Bruel  (Otto the worm is saddened when his friend Bob the caterpillar becomes a butterfly until Bob reassures him that his role in digging through the earth is critical in this story which beautifully combines earth science and the power of friendship.)  Can booktalk Bubba and Trixie -- Lisa Campbell Ernst (beautiful story -- a ladybug with a crumbled wing who cannot fly helps a caterpillar overcome his  reluctance to experience change) 

Sign Language Song: "Look up Look Down" (alt: "Let's Take a Little Walk") -from Pick Me Up: Fun Songs for Learning Signs – Robert Berg, et. all 419 PIC

Briefly showed pages in A Butterfly is Patient – Dianna Hutts Aston (595.789 AST) (Beautiful illustrations and two-level text. For pre-school groups, I read the large text and explain the meaning but don’t read the text boxes out loud.  Great info (difference between cocoon & chrysalis, butterflies smell with antenae, taste with their feet!) and vocab  (“proboscis” “camouflage”) to share.)  Booktalked new title on monarch butterfly migration: Traveling Butterflies by Susumu Shingu.

Flannel: Color Butterflies (optional: using counting cards)

Song: Life of a Butterfly (use chrysalis & caterpillar puppet if didn’t use for Very Hungry Caterpillar)

Briefly showed cool different-sized pages from Waiting for Wings by Lois Ehlert


DVD: Waiting for Wings (on Weston Woods PPR DVD "Spring Science” -- a beautiful musical version of Lois Ehlert’s story -- I pass out scarves when the butterflies hatch on video. We dance with scarves then usually run the video a 2nd time and we act out the life cycle with the scarves) Preschools w/o DVD player, dance to track #1 of George Winston’s album Summer or "Butterfly" -- track #9 on Bari Koral Family Rock Band's Anna and the Cupcakes .

Optional (for older groups if time—art inspiration): Questions, Questions – Marcus Pfister

Hand stamping (or within program):

"Butterfly" -- track #8 on Hap Palmer's Animal Antics

More great ideas:,
Additional possibilities:
A Caterpillar’s Wish – Mary Murphy  (younger groups)
The Crunching Munching Caterpillar – Sheridan Cain (also a pop-up)
The Secret Life of the Woolly Bear Caterpillar – Lawrence Pringle
If At First You Do Not See -- Ruth Brown (age 5+ groups) – great turn-around book


ROLY POLY CATERPILLAR Tune: “Eensy Weensy Spider”
The Roly-poly caterpillar (Creep arm like a caterpillar.)
Into a corner crept.
Spun around himself a blanket (Spin around.)
Then for a long time slept. (Rest head on hands, eyes closed.)
The Roly-poly caterpillar
Wakening by and by (Open eyes and stretch.)
Found himself with beautiful wings
Changed to a butterfly. (Flutter arms like wings)

THE LIFE OF A BUTTERFLY Tune: “Skip to My Lou”
I'm a caterpillar, wiggle with me,
I'm a caterpillar, wiggle with me,
I'm a caterpillar, wiggle with me,
What'll I be, my darlin'?
A chrysalis, now sleep like me.....
What'll I be, my darlin'?
A butterfly, come fly with me...
Come fly with me my darlin'.
Now all together, lets do all three.
A caterpillar, a chrysalis, a butterfly -- three.
Move your body like this with me.
The life of a butterfly, darlin'.

The first to come to the garden bed
Is a lovely butterfly of brilliant red.
Then in comes another and that makes two,
Fly right in, my friend of blue.
"The garden is fine, the best I've seen,"
Says the butterfly of springtime green.
Our garden needs a sunshiny fellow,
Fly in, butterfly with wings of yellow.
Little friend of purple, fly in too,
This garden is waiting for a color like you.
Orange, orange, you've waited so long,
Fly right in where you belong.
Butterflies, butterflies, you're such a sight,
Flying together-a springtime delight!

BWL 5.14, 5.16, BGL 5.17


Sharing the Pop-Up Very Hungry Caterpillar & acting out the life cycle of a butterfly with the DVD musical version of Lois Ehlert’s “Waiting for Wings”

BWL 5.17 – added butterfly flier craft – used pipe cleaners for antennae,  used butterfly masks for the butterfly, markers, dot paints, and google eyes to decorate.  Found easiest to staple butterfly and pipe cleaner to tp roll.  Also had life cycle drawings available to color.



St. Bernards 5.17
Pop Up Very Hungry Caterpillar with flannel chrysallis/puppet “reveal”
Song: “The Life of a Butterfly”
Bob & Otto
Song: “Make New Friends, but Keep the Old”
A Butterfly is Patient (read some pages, told others depending on age of kids)
Sign-Language Song: “Look Up, Look Down” (#10 from Pick Me Up)
Kindergarten only: If At First You Do Not See by Ruth Brown
Beautiful Hands by Kathryn Otoshi
Singable Book: What a Wonderful World, illustrated by Ashley Bryan
Danced with scarves to Louis Armstrong version (track #1 on The Best of Louis Armstrong)

Other possible rhymes & fingerplays:

A caterpillar crawled to the top of a tree.
[Extend left arm and crawl right index finger up it like a caterpillar.]
"I think I'll take a nap," said he.
[Wiggle right index finger.]
So under the leaf he began to creep.
[Move under left hand.]
He spun a cocoon and he fell asleep.
[Make fist around index finger.]
For two long weeks he slept in that cocoon bed,
Till spring came along and said,
"Wake up! Wake up! You sleepy head."
[Shake arms.]
Out of the leaf he did cry.
[Hook thumbs and spread fingers to make a butterfly.]
"Look, I am a butterfly."

There was a little caterpillar crawling all about
He worked and he worked without a doubt.
[Wiggle one finger.]
Wrapping himself in a snug cocoon.
Waiting and waiting, will it be soon?
[Place finger in palm of other hand, wrap fingers around.]
Look, he’s coming out, my oh my!
For now he’s become a beautiful butterfly.
[Cross thumbs and let fingers be flapping butterfly wings.]

My friendly Caterpillar [Fingers crawl up arm.]
Made its cocoon one day. [Close hands together.]
It turned into a butterfly [Open hands with thumbs hooked together.]
And quickly flew away. [Flap hands.]

Tune: “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star”
Flutter, flutter butterfly
Floating in the springtime sky
Floating by for all to see
Floating by so merrily
Flutter, flutter, butterfly
Floating in the springtime sky!

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