Salt Creek Butterfly Farm
planting butterfly habitats, presenting interactive butterfly programs
Option One: Observation Stations and Hand-feeding Butterflies
-Intended for two classrooms totaling approximately 50 students - one classroom at a time.
-Students rotate through three stations.
-Live Monarchs and Monarch caterpillars are provided for guided activities.
-12 sq feet of space required for walk-in feeding/observation tent.
-One additional helper is needed in addition to the classroom teacher and presenter.
INTRODUCTION and DIRECTIONS - 10 minutes
Station One: BUTTERFLY LIFECYCLE -10 minutes
Students estimate and record number of Monarchs eggs being laid on the host plant by our gravid females.
Students use the caterpillar measuring mat to identify a live caterpillar on our plants that is the same size pictured on the mat.
Use magnifying glasses to observe chrysalides. Make an educated guess which chrysalide had been the best eater when in caterpillar form. Which will eclose as a butterfly first?
Station Two: NECTAR STATION - 10 minutes
Students choose one of three nectar sources to feed a butterfly; fresh wild flowers, juicy ripe watermelon, or high endurance Gatorade.
After preparing their nectar source, students enter the butterfly tent to hand feed their butterfly. They will chart if their butterfly was male or female, which nectar they fed with and whether their butterfly used its proboscis to feed successfully.
Station Three: WING PATTERN DESIGN - 10 minutes
Using the handout provided, design one set of butterfly wings that will warn predators away. Use at least one set of eye spots and color using one of the common warning color combinations.
(This portion can be continued beyond the workshop if time doesn't permit completion.)
FOLLOW UP DISCUSSION - 10 minutes
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Available May thru September
Option Two: Simplified Butterfly Verre Eglomise
- This 1 hr. classroom workshop uses a very modern adaption of reverse glass painting combining art and science principles in a creative, thought provoking manner. Vocabulary used will reinforce both art and science disciplines. This workshop is easily adapted to suit grades 1-8.
Students observe butterfly specimens and photographs to recognize a variety of wing shapes, sizes, patterns and coloration. Students design their own anatomically correct butterfly. Following the historic method of verre eglomise, students will transfer their design to an acrylic plate and work backwards beginning with details and ending with larger fields of color.
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Available year round
Option Three: Butterfly Art and Nature Residency Program
- Four one-hour visits per classroom, appropriate for grades 1-8
- Live, native Illinois caterpillars, butterflies, specimens, artistic and scientific photographs
- Aligned with National Science and Arts Learning Standards
- Art materials
- Leave behind classroom observation materials and activities
- Hands-on instruction, science and visual art units
Observation and interpretation are at the core of this multidisciplinary program. Students observe the physical structure of the insects, observe various behaviors, and learn about habitat. Students decipher, describe and interpret the elements of art and principles of design inherent in the body plan and physical detailing of caterpillars, chrysalides and adult butterflies.
Large scale, acrylic paintings are created by students that draw upon their observations of specific butterfly wing patterns.
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Option Four: Mexican Cultural Arts and the Monarch Butterfly
Tens of millions of Monarchs reach their final overwintering destination in the mountains of Mexico at the beginning of November. They arrive emass flying is steady streams through fields at harvest time. Their arrival coincides exactly with the Day of the Dead celebrations, honoring the souls of past loved ones.
Monarchs are often thought of as being messengers of these souls, and the Monarch likeness shows up in many works of art traditionally associated with this celebration.
This residency examines Monarch Migration - a phenomenon which may cease to exist in the very near future due to genetically modified crops and climate change. It looks at the Monarch as a symbol, and at its use in traditional Mexican artwork.
- Four one-hour visits per classroom, appropriate for grades 5-8
- Examples of traditional and modern Day of the Dead artwork
-Aligned with National Science and Arts Learning Standards
- Art materials
- Hands-on instruction, science and visual arts units
3-Dimensonal plaster skulls, created using symbols and design elements found in traditional and modern Day of the Dead skulls.
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