Discovery Time: Butterflies

Reflective symmetry occurs when an object can be divided into two halves and both halves are mirror images of each other. Butterflies are beautiful examples of reflective symmetry in nature, and in this activity we will take common supplies around the house to make a butterfly.

STEAM stands for science, technology, engineering, art and math. Your child’s creativity, curiosity and persistence make them natural scientists. Science and art encourage your child to explore and investigate their world by observing and experimenting. Early math and reading skills often overlap, too.

Children are born with a natural affinity toward nature and are fascinated with animals. By building on your child’s natural interests, you are fostering a respect for all living things.

Art projects encourage your child’s confidence and critical thinking skills. Picking up sequins, craft poms and other art supplies builds and refines your child’s pincher grasp and fine motor skills, which they will need in order to use a pencil and begin to write. Observing their world helps children notice and identify details, which helps them make connections and build on skills. Identifying how things are similar and different helps with letter recognition, but it’s also an important early math skill. Talking with your child builds their vocabulary. The more words a child hears, the easier it is for them to recognize words while reading.

Children who have opportunities to explore nature are more likely to handle challenges more capably, act responsibly and have greater appreciation of arts, music, history and literature. They are also more likely to choose science-related careers and become environmentally aware adults.

You can create your butterfly with all kinds of materials:
  • Buttons
  • Sequins
  • Craft poms
  • Stickers
  • Stick-on gems

As you work, you can explore colors, textures, and even counting. You can even try drawing your own butterfly designs.

Add caterpillars, butterflies or other science concepts to your regular reading time, too! Here are a few books with caterpillars and butterflies you can share. What else has symmetry in nature? Take a walk and see what you can discover. Explore, experiment, and most of all, have fun!

Extended Reading

A Butterfly is Patient by Dianna Hutts Aston Request

The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle Request

Butterfly Counting by Jerry Pallotta Request

Preschool Science: Bugs (STEAM Kit) Request


For more STEAM activities, check out our Simple STEAM Activities for Your Preschooler.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *