Okay, yes this is very late. We had our release celebration last month, but I never got a chance to edit the pictures. Our monarch release celebration was very late this year because of our mold problems in September. Since my class and I were visitors of North Main Street School for several weeks, I was unable to bring most of the caterpillars/pupae and adults with me to school. I did bring some caterpillars to school, and the students were able to see the pupa dance several times, even a few eclosures! We did release a bunch of monarchs (as well as eastern black swallowtails) at LAS in the mornings before the buses whisked us off to NMSS.
Here are a few photographs taken by Mrs. Kay Medina, TSA extraordinaire! It was a small release, but the students still enjoyed it very much!
I hope you all are having an enjoyable summer vacation. My vacation officially started on Thursday afternoon at 4:01pm. Yippee! Now I don’t have to go back to work for almost 5 weeks.
Summer School was a nice four weeks. I had a group of 16 second and third grade students. We started off with a few caterpillars and lots and lots of eggs! Students got to see an amazing site–a brand new monarch caterpillar eating its way out of the shell! We observed this phenomena under the microscope, so students could see the little guy munching away. (I hope to have a digital microscope in September so that we can take enlarged photos of this happening!)
The caterpillars soon got fat on their exclusive diet of milkweed. Most of the milkweed came from our newly planted LAS garden. John, my amazing partner in crime, was key in getting my garden into the ground. We worked on many of his days off to till and dig the soil, prepare the beds and plant the milkweed. Thank you so much, honey!
Dara, Julia, Robert and the whole gang were fascinated by the caterpillars. Arianna and Andrea wrote stories about them. Quentin drew diagrams of their life cycles. We watched as the cats grew and grew. As they entered their next stage of life, Vanessa seemed mesmerized as the caterpillars hung upside down in a letter J.
On the last day of summer school, the final stage of metamorphosis happened. I placed a ‘tower’ of chrysalides at each group in the classroom. Vanessa quietly and politely came to me and told me it was happening. We all rushed to the tower to observe a new butterfly as it pushed its way out of the now almost transparent chrysalis. Everyone held their breath as the legs came out, then the rest of the butterfly. Yippee! The smiles were on everyone’s faces as each butterfly made its way into the world.
We ended our summer school with new, magical beginnings.
Rather poetic, don’t you think?