Thursday, February 14, 2008

Science In a Jar

We had a surprise today... our caterpillar finally turned into a BUTTERFLY!
This is another successful homeschool science project. The other one was the tadpoles-frogs we did in 2006. (Interested in the froggies, read:We Have Tadpoles, Froggy Update)

Anyway, the reason for this science project was the many caterpillars that kept popping up to treat themselves to my little baby lime trees. Everyday I have to go check to see if those pesky things are chomping the leaves up. Well, decided to make something good out of something bad, so I popped some of them into a jar and turned them into a science lesson. I dated the jar 19 January 2008. So, it's been almost a month.

KokoD was amazed how those little buggers ate and ate and grew and grew. He would tell me "Mommy, see how big and fat this one is." And mommy would answer "Ewww, get them away from me." I hate caterpillars and worms with all the energy of my soul.

Anyway, I had about 3-4 caterpillars inside the jar. Only 1 made it all the way to become a beautiful butterfly. 1 died and turned black. Another became a chrysalis but I think it died too. Besides learning about their life cycle, the kids also learned what caterpillar poo-poo looks like. It was also exciting to see what kind of butterfly the caterpillar turned out to be. I think KokoD wants to have another go at this science project. He wants to see if he gets a different kind of butterfly. Unfortunately I only have the kind that eats my lime trees. AAARRGGH! Oh well, I guess we will have another go at it because it will be another lesson to show that the same kind of caterpillars turn out to be the same kind of butterflies. Goodness know I seem to have a constant flow of supply.

Oh, I also learned a lesson... Now I know which butterfly is the culprit!

KokoD waiting for the butterfly to fly out.

Happy on my papaya tree. Yeah, you better keep your babies away from my lime trees.
Mamas Bag of Tricks
  • Life science lessons are much more fun than just reading facts from a book.
  • Need a caterpillar, call me.
  • Keep a garden. It holds many science lessons.


  1. that is really amazing huh? the kids must have been thrilled? I know Ashley would ask a million questions if she witnesses it. :) great job ai lian!

  2. Nice pic... really amazing :)

  3. mom2ashley & j@n!ce:
    Yes amazing. So go bottle a caterpillar today. Your kids will love it.

  4. a&a'smom19 February, 2008 13:09

    Hey, thxs for the gr8 idea since my jasmine plant has lots of catterpillars! I bet my boys will be excited.

  5. this is fun! so you got to feed the caterpillar once they are settled in the jar? Your kids are so "kwai" never take out to play?

  6. wonderful idea Ai Lian! will try this out with the girls. my lime tree too has been victimized by them... just 1 question, is it ok to use plastic jar?

  7. a&a's mom:
    Yes, do it. I would like to see what kind of butterflies turn out.

    Yes, you have to feed the caterpillar. They are a hungry lot and am glad when they become chrysalis or else, botak my plant.

    Never tried but I'm sure plastic is okay. Just make sure to poke holes at the top so they can breathe.


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