22 Aug 2014
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Patch Instagram photo by mls267

St. Gilbert's 4th Graders Release Butterflies

Fourth-graders at St. Gilbert Catholic School in Grayslake released the Monarch butterflies they raised from caterpillars for their hands-on science curriculum.

St. Gilbert's 4th Graders Release Butterflies St. Gilbert's 4th Graders Release Butterflies St. Gilbert's 4th Graders Release Butterflies St. Gilbert's 4th Graders Release Butterflies St. Gilbert's 4th Graders Release Butterflies St. Gilbert's 4th Graders Release Butterflies St. Gilbert's 4th Graders Release Butterflies St. Gilbert's 4th Graders Release Butterflies St. Gilbert's 4th Graders Release Butterflies

It was a sad to see them go, admitted St. Gilbert School fourth-graders of the eight Monarch butterflies they raised from caterpillars, but it was time to take flight, hopefully all the way to Mexico.

Students from Mary Fink and Cathy Green's fourth-grade science classes have spent weeks observing the life cycles of their butterflies and writing in journals about what they had learned. They even created their own illustrations.

Here are some of the comments students made about their fun and educational experience:

"We've been raising them since they were caterpillars," said Abby.

"They ate milkweed because it's poisonous to predators," said Anthony.

"We saw them turn into chrysalis. They were green underneath," said Molly.

"They shed their skin and ate it," said Claire.

The day finally on Sept 29 came when the students let their butterflies leave home for their long journey to Mexico, where they will hibernate before awakening in the spring to lay their eggs and die.

Fink said each butterfly was tagged, so if someone finds them, insight into their journey can be obtained via computer. It's a long shot, said Fink, but the possibility has really excited the students.

"They've learned a lot through this project," she said.

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