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Children's Books About Butterlies


Updated February 23, 2013

Different children have different interests and some children's interests includes butterflies. Many children (and adults) find butterflies to be both beautiful and fascinating. How does that worm-like caterpillar turn into a delicate creature with wings? If your child is one of those fascinated by - or even obsessed with - butterflies, check out these books on butterflies and their lives.

1. From Caterpillar to Butterfly

From Caterpillar to Butterfly
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Preschoolers are sure to enjoy this book. It explains the life stages of a butterfly from egg through the metamorphasis where the caterpillar turns into a butterful, but does it in context of a classroom. Young school children observe the process in their classroom, all illustrated with beautifully done watercolors. They get to watch as their classroom caterpiller molts, becomes a chrysalis, and eventually emerges from its "cocoon" as a butterfly, drying its wings. Children reading the book can share in the excitement of the children in the book as they await the transformation! The book includes an appendix with a list of butterfuly centers in the US. Ages 4-8
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2. National Geographic Readers: Caterpillar to Butterfly

National Geographic Readers: Caterpillar to Butterfly
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This book is an interesting and fun beginner's book on butterflies. It explains how caterpillars become butterflies. The photos and illustrations are beautiful and sure to appeal to young children. There are some fun learning activities in the book that reinforce learning and help build reading skills. As an added bonus, the book includes some informatioin on different butterfly types and even some poisonous caterpillars! Ages 4-6
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3. Where Butterflies Grow

Where Butterflies Grow
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Not only does this book introduce young children to the life cycle of a butterfly, it also offers a visual feast with its beautifully rich watercolor illustrations. The book begins with children looking at leaves in a flower garden. They see eggs on a leaf.  The story goes on to follow the stages of life from egg to caterpillar to butterfly.  The story is told in a rhythmic poetic prose. Here's how the first life stage is described:
you are someone small
hidden in a tiny egg
growing bigger
growing darker...
Ages 5-8
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4. National Geographic Readers: Great Migrations Butterflies

National Geographic Readers: Great Migrations Butterflies
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Colorful photographs and illustrations enhance the information provided in this butterful book. While it does have information about the life stages of butterflies, it also has much more. It discusses the migration of butterflies and illustrates the migratory paths on world maps, explaining what migration means and why animals - and butterflies - migrate. The dangers of migration and from predators are also discussed as are some "cool" facts about Monarch butterflies. A glossary is provided at the end of the book, helping children learn some new terminology. Ages 7-9
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5. Butterflies and Moths

Butterflies and Moths
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This book is full of information and and illustrations. It covers the life cycle of butterflies and moths, life cycles that are quite similar. It also explains the other similaries of the two creatures and discusses their differences as well. Children will learn the different parts of butterflies and moths, too. Everything is illustrated in colorful and detailed drawings. Each butterfly and moth is different - and so are their eggs, which readers will see from the illustrations. This book is for older children, but younger children and even adults who are fascinated by butterflies will certainly enjoy this book. It provides illustrations of 423 species of butterflies and moths with advice on how to identify them. It also explains how to attract, rear, and preserve them. With all that, it makes an ideal guide that can be carried around outside as a reference.
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6. The Family Butterfly Book

The Family Butterfly Book
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This book is for the real butterfly lover, the one who knows butterfly basics, but wants to learn more and do more. Sure, the book goes over the basics, too, how a butterfly transforms from egg to butterfly. But it does so much more. It covers some myths about butterflies like the one that says touching a butterfly will rub the powder off its wings and cause it to die. (Yes, that's a myth.) The book also provides details on how to attract, catch, handle, and raise butterflies. And that's not all! There are 15 different projects and activities described, including how to hand-feed a butterfly and create a live butterfly-tree. The information and projects are enhanced with lovely photos and illustrations. Ages 10 and up
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7. The Life Cycles of Butterflies: From Egg to Maturity

The Life Cycles of Butterflies: From Egg to Maturity
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This is a great book for butterfly lovers. It has loads of detailed information about the life cycle of butterflies, including not just the transformation from egg to adult, but also information on behavior. It even includes information on how butterflies lay their eggs and descriptions of the "architecture" of eggs. The photographs that illustrate the information provided include close ups of these creatures at each stage in their life cycle. Discussions include camouflaging "strategies" of the chrysalis. Ages 10 and up
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