Monday, September 22, 2014

New Beginnings . . .

"What the caterpillar calls the end, the master calls a butterfly."       --Richard Bach

A new friend
A new school year has begun and we are again in the company of monarch butterflies!  We have had the good fortune of having four caterpillars (one actually started as an egg in our class) turn into chrysalises and so far, three have become butterflies!  These first three are all females and they seem healthy and anxious to cross the borders into Mexico.  We have tagged one and already sent it on it's way.   We are waiting for a sunny, breezy day (perhaps Tuesday) to set the next two free.  We hope the last one comes out of his/her chrysalis during class.  We are also participating in "Project North," a symbolic migration.  We will be sending butterflies we have made, a letter translated into Spanish and information about our town (along with photos and postcards).  With any luck, our butterflies will find a class of students in Mexico somewhere and we will make friends and cross borders of our own.  We are also learning a little bit about the culture in Mexico.  This week we are reading and learning about the Mexican festival, Day of the Dead.  This celebration is a time to honor and celebrate those who have died with parades, good foods and fun.  The Day of the Dead is celebrated around the same time as the monarchs' arrival in great masses to their overwintering homes in the trees of Mexico.  Many say that the butterflies carry on their wings the souls of their ancestors.  I would like to believe that four butterflies will also carry with them good will from the hearts of students in classroom 104 to the people in Mexico who will be seeing them soon.   
Our class set of butterflies headed on a "Symbolic Migration"
Our Class, "Being the Butterfly"
One of our caterpillars becoming a chrysalis