Thornton Jr. High Academy students have adopted first grade students in Mrs. Goldfisher’s class at James Leitch School as our “Butterfly Buddies”. In addition, we have developed an Insect Art Contest with the Smithsonian, are communicating with scientists around the world, and researching insects related to history and art.


Butterfly Buddies

Butterfly Buddies is a project in which first and seventh grade students are paired to learn about butterflies. Just recently first grade buddies asked a question about butterflies and their seventh grade partners researched it. When the seventh grader determined the answer, they e-mailed the first grader. The answer was constructed in a few simple sentences. Also, each seventh grader buddy created a Power Point presentation called “About Me” for their first grade Butterfly Buddies as an introduction. The first graders are currently working on a presentation of their own about butterflies.

In the future both classes will be doing an activity called “Mystery Butterfly”. In this project the first graders will be describing a butterfly for the seventh graders to draw. Meanwhile, the buddies are e-mailing each other and are communicating to keep in touch.


Butterfly Buddies in Ardenwood

Some Academy students recently met their Butterfly Buddies at Ardenwood Historical Farm. They all had a great time! After everyone got together with their buddies they were off to the exciting day that lay ahead of them.

First, the Butterfly Buddies were seated in a small cabin to watch a slide show about butterflies. They learned about migrating habits, life cycle, and how to tell the difference between male and female butterflies.

After that, the Butterfly Buddies took a stroll through the Historic Park. They unexpectedly found some butterflies flapping their wings on the ground. From the slideshow that they had watched they could tell that they were drying the water off of their wings. The first graders were very excited. Some of them even held the butterflies in their hands!

All eyes were faced skyward to view the
elusive Monarch clinging to high tree branches. The day had been exhausting and exciting, The Academy students learned how it feels to talk and spend time with a younger student and how to set a good example. The first graders weren’t shy at the end of the day. The Butterfly Buddies were captured by the beauty of the monarch butterflies.

Here is an example of our communication:

Thornton Jr. High Academy students have adopted first grade
students in Mrs. Goldfisher’s class as our “Butterfly Buddies”. As
part of the learning experience to assist our second grade buddies in identifying the major parts of a butterfly, the Insecta Inspecta World team asked students to describe a ‘Mystery Butterfly’ and send us their email description. Further email eventually produced a product as the Insecta Inspecta team translated description into graphic.

Would you like to play “Mystery Butterfly”? The Insecta Inspecta Team
will select one email a day and draw it according to your description.
We will then post it on our web site. You may visit the USGS website
to become familiar with the terms used to describe Lepitoptera.