A Dance With the Butterflies

This blog is an area for project participants to collaborate, share ideas, ask questions, etc.

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Friday, June 23, 2006

Butterfly Jeopardy

Originally uploaded by Lanise.
Hi to all,
Here is one of our student projects - Butterfly Jeopardy.
It had every hand in the room up and anxious to answer!

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Monarch Live!

Monarch Live!
Originally uploaded by Hope8.

My audio/visual savy coworker found a really creative use for our equipment! Under the netting to the left is our butterfly tower.Inside,the monarch chrysalides are hanging from bridal netting on an artificial Christmas tree branch.A video camera is below,recording all the action.
We had watched this butterfly emerge but wanted to give her some " alone time" as she dried her wings. He set up the video camera to the VCR so that we could watch all the action as it was happening on TV. And we have a video record of the whole emergence! She was beautiful .We set her free with her brothers and sisters. What a wonderful end to the school year.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

A thought about UDL and this project

I was just sitting here thinking about how sad it is that this collaboration will soon come to an end. It was just so COOL to learn so much in such a short period of time.It was just so awesome to interact with teachers from all over the globe!
I have heard it said often that to compare the teaching strategies and approaches in early childhood education to the public school system is like “comparing apples and oranges.” But I have to say after my experience with this project that with the UDL format... this is just NOT SO. “Teaching every student” means just that. EVERY student whether they are 2 or 42 (or 48 :)) can learn when "multiple means of representation, multiple means of expression, and multiple means of engagement" are part of the equation. Blogging and communicating with all of you has taught me so much about using technology with my little ones. It has proven to me that teaching and learning truly IS universal. No matter the age of the students (or the teachers!)
I think it would be really cool to keep a blog like this going .It would be really great to have a place where teachers could share resources and strategies and continue to learn from one another! What do you guys think?

Monday, June 05, 2006

A Dance With the Butterflies: June 2006

We Are Looking for our own Caterpillars

Hi all,
Just wanted to report that my class took the news well that their caterpillars might have died over the weekend. They were happy that I had ordered more caterpillars. They were eager to go out and look in their gardens for caterpillars. At recess they were out in the garden that we planted about a month ago. They didn't see any, but they found evidence that something had been eating the new leaves on the various plants.

I was happy that this didn't discourage them from creating their own projects. There seems to be a lot of enthusiasm and excitement for this project. They loved the work that Hope's students did and can hardly wait to see their own work posted.
It was a good day for everyone!

New Arrivals!

Today we came in and had eight butterflies that emerged! Six over the weekend and two today. The children and I were amazed! Needless to say we spent most of the day observing them drying their wings and a few were actually eating which was nice. We have several more chrysalides that are due anytime now-they have turned dark. We did have one that was malformed. I took some pictures that I will get up as soon as possible. I am so relieved that the children were able to see this process. I was thrilled to hear their discussions of what they had seen and what they have learned. Looking forward to what we will see tomorrow!!!

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Options for Students and More

Hi to all,
As I've said to a couple of people, the devastation of caterpillars dying or dying in chrysalis has become a grave concern with this unit in recent years.

ALL the most popular companies from which to purchase larvae are "farmers" and with this has come too much inbreeding, and with this disease. I'm greatly concerned with what's happening in terms of the environment. There almost needs to be some guidelines that these companies should follow.

A word to all who are having some problems - it's NOT YOU, it's what the companies are doing. They aren't bad people, but they are clearly driven by the popular demand for these beautiful creatures!

On a totally different note...I worked hard to provide multiple product options for my kids. When I presented them this week, MOST of my kids wanted to do "traditional" offerings. I was shocked at first, but then thought - are they wanting to do what is comfortable??? On an up note, several asked if they could do something different, to which I said "YES!" Now I know I'll always be sure to incude an "Other" option on differentiated assignments.

I'll let you know how it goes.

A Dance With the Butterflies: June 2006

A Dance With the Butterflies: June 2006

I just went to school to check up on our caterpillars and discovered that they are all dead. At least I think they are dead. They aren't moving and the one that on the top of the lid was on the bottom of the container. I am so upset! The children are going to be so sad. I will try to get more, but I don't think they will emerge in time:(

If I can find more butterflies, I'm wondering how many to buy? I want to be able to have some of them emerge.


Hope's Project

After putting together Hope's web page for our project, I took the time to view the other activities she did with her students. Needless to say, it took my breath away! Just listening to her little ones talk about butterflies validated all the work I've been doing with my online friends and colleagues. I'm going to be a featured speaker in Georgia next November and can't wait to share how our group has been blogging for understanding. Hope told me that our blog has introduced her to so many new technologies and it's such a pleasure to see how they were used with her pre schoolers in such a creative way.
Thank you, Hope!

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Here is a picture from my weekend trip to New York and the American Museum of Natural History.

A Dance With the Butterflies

A Dance With the Butterflies
I am thankful that we aren't the only class with most of our larvae dying. We are down to 4. 2 are against the side of the vial. The children are praying. Despite this, it has been fun studying butterflies. They are delightful little creatures. We have had a few visitors, cabbage white butterflies and a couple moths. Yesterday, one student caught a moth and though it had antennas like a butterfly, it definitely had a broad body. It is great to watch the students examining and arriving to insightful conclusions.