K-12 Teaching and Learning From the UNC School of Education

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The world of a butterfly
The transformation of a caterpillar into a butterfly is one of nature's most amazing feats. These photographs show the development of an eastern black swallowtail butterfly from egg to larva to chrysalis to adult.
Format: slideshow (multiple pages)
Number combinations
Students will use green and blue craft pom-poms to explore number combinations to five.
Format: lesson plan (grade K Mathematics)
By Beth Deyton.
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Second larval instar
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Second larval instar
The larva clings to the stem of a parsley plant. Although butterfly and moth caterpillars appear to have many legs, as insects, they have only six true legs -- visible here just behind the larva's head.
Format: image
Life cycle of painted lady butterflies
Students will make a chart of the life cycle of the painted lady butterflies that the class observes over a period of several days.
Format: lesson plan (grade K English Language Arts and Science)
By Anne Allen.
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Third larval instar
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Third larval instar
The larva on a flowering parsley plant.
Format: image/photograph
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Third larval instar
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Third larval instar
Thirteen days out of the egg, the larva is growing rapidly.
Format: image/photograph
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Third larval instage
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Third larval instage
Fourteen days out of the egg, the larva leaves its food source in search of a place to pupate (become a chrysalis).
Format: image/photograph
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Third larval instage
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Third larval instage
Here, the larva's maturing structure is visible. The larva is now 10 days out of the egg.
Format: image/photograph
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Third larval instage
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Third larval instage
As it grows, the larva is able to move easily from plant to plant in search of more food, as it does here.
Format: image/photograph
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: First larval instar
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: First larval instar
The first larval instar (first stage of the caterpillar) is shown here a day after hatching.
Format: image/photograph
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Larva, first instar, day 1 after hatching
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Larva, first instar, day 1 after hatching
The first larval instar, or stage of the caterpillar, looks nothing like the later stages.
Format: image/photograph
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Second larval instar
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Second larval instar
The second larval instar, or stage of the caterpillar, develops the familiar stripes and markings. This larva is seven days out of the egg.
Format: image/photograph
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Forming a chrysalis
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Forming a chrysalis
The larva attaches itself by a pair of threads to the underside of a stick, branch, or leaf, and assumes a C-shape as it prepares to form a chrysalis.
Format: image/photograph
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Egg, day 7
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Egg, day 7
On the seventh day after the egg is laid, the butterfly larva is visible inside the egg.
Format: image/photograph
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Larva emerging from egg, day 7
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Larva emerging from egg, day 7
The butterfly larva (caterpillar) emerges from the egg about seven days after the egg was laid.
Format: image/photograph
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Third larval instar
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Third larval instar
In its third instar (growth stage), the eastern black swallowtail caterpillar takes on its familiar black and green stripes and yellow eye spots.
Format: image/photograph
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Third larval instar
Eastern black swallowtail butterfly: Third larval instar
Closeup of the head of the eastern black swallowtail larva, a day before entering its pupal stage. As a defense mechanism, the red markings and yellow "horns" on its head become more prominent when the larva is threatened.
Format: image/photograph
Butterfly metamorphosis
This is an integrated lesson which is introduced using the book The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle. Butterfly metamorphosis is explored through art, math, and writing.
Format: lesson plan (grade 1–2 Visual Arts Education, English Language Arts, and Science)
By Laura Byers.
Butterfly cycle
Students will understand the life cycle of the butterfly and create various art activities that would model metamorphosis.
Format: lesson plan (grade 1–2 Visual Arts Education, English Language Arts, and Science)
By Becky Woolard.
Inching through oral language for ESOL students
This lesson will use the book The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle to help the student use clear and precise language to demonstrate comprehension.
Format: lesson plan (grade K English Language Arts)
By Angela Goldberg.