We love art projects, especially when we can incorporate some elements of nature into them. These symmetrical butterfly mosaics are the perfect project for learning about symmetry, incorporating into a unit on butterflies, or just for fun!
It has been a very exciting week in my son’s kindergarten class. They have been studying the life-cycle of a butterfly with a real life experiment. Five baby caterpillars arrived in the class a few weeks ago in a special container and this week 3 beautiful butterflies emerged from their chrysalis (don’t ask about the other two) right there in the classroom. They are due to be released into the wild any day now, which is going to be a ceremony full of mixed emotions as some kids in particular have grown very close to them.
To celebrate the new arrivals I bought a bunch of flowers to turn into beautiful butterfly mosaics on sticky contact paper at home.
Symmetrical Butterfly Mosaic
Bunch of flowers (if you are in a classroom and don’t have these, you can use paper scraps or sequins, etc – anything they can design with)
Creating your Mosaic
As well as learning about their life-cycle, looking at the class butterflies has provided the kids with a great introduction to the math concept of symmetry. Each butterfly’s wing is the mirror image of the other, making them perfectly symmetrical.
To reinforce the concept of symmetry at home, we set up a sensory art activity so we could talk about it further and see it in action on our own symmetrical butterfly mosaics.
Before sitting down to do this activity with my kids, I prepared the butterfly templates. I laid down a sheet of white paper and placed a sheet of contact paper sticky side up over it. I then used masking tape to secure the contact paper down and drew on a butterfly shape with a black marker.
Then all I had to do was snip the heads of some of the flowers and shred petals off the rest and we were ready to go. We soon found out that the flatter the flower, the easier it was to stick onto the contact paper. I had hoped to collect flowers from our garden for this activity, but we just didn’t have enough ready to keep all three of my kids happy.
The first thing that struck us when we sat down to do the activity was the strong scent of the flowers. This provided a lovely relaxing element to the activity which really helped my kids to concentrate and focus on the activity. In fact, I have not seen the three of them work so quietly together on a a project in a while.
My boys took great care in making their butterflies as symmetrical as possible, whereas my 4 year old daughter concentrated on loading as many of the petals as possible onto her butterfly.
Once finished we had 3 beautiful butterfly mosaics to enjoy and a good understanding of how to create a symmetrical pattern.
More Butterfly Fun
Looking for more butterfly themed ideas and inspiration? Here are some of our favorites!