Director, St. Paul’s Nursery School
All things bright and beautiful,
All creatures great and small,
All things wise and wonderful,
The Lord God made them all.
The four and five-year-old classes of the nursery school each received (via Amazon) ladybug and butterfly larvae early in May.The concern for the ladybugs surviving their hatching lasted for days with no movement what-so-ever observed.We began to doubt the advice on the accompanying directions, which basically said, give them time to acclimate.
Alas, the ladybug larvae did eventually begin to develop and hatch and lived in a clear, small domed home. They were tiny but the children enjoyed watching them through a magnifying glass.The caterpillars were a bit livelier and arrived in three cups with five critters in each cup. When the caterpillars became chrysalides, after several days of eating the provisions in their cup, they were carefully moved to a netted enclosure called a butterfly house; then the waiting began.
Each time I stopped to visit one of the three hosting classrooms the children would eagerly share with me what they observed. They were excited to be watching life grow. It was clear they felt responsible for these insects, and once hatched talked about how they ate the juice from the orange slice which they carefully placed in their habitat.
As the days passed, several of the ladybug larvae transformed and became more clearly recognizable, looking more like the ones I’ve seen in my own backyard and only one butterfly failed to emerge from the chrysalis. The butterflies, at first, hung on the side of the netted enclosure but became more active and eager to fly as days passed.Each class discussed and determined which day they would release their creatures outside on the playground and completed the task with great delight.They knew it was time to let them go.
Children are naturally curious and the teachers at the nursery school work in a very thoughtful way to provide students with opportunities to both wonder and discover.Time and time again, as teachers, we are privileged to observe the great delight children take in acquiring new knowledge or gaining an understanding of their world.The care and interest they displayed for these smallest of creatures seem both beautiful and magical.Their joy, care, and curiosity in creatures great and small is a good reminder of the small beauties and adventures that are around us every day in creation.
So, perhaps when you see a butterfly or ladybug this summer remember it could be one that had its beginning inside a classroom at St. Paul’s Nursery School
Here’s to see seeing all things bright and beautiful this summer!