“I only ask to be free.  The butterflies are free.”  Charles Dickens



Becoming Butterflies.  Anne Rockwell.  Walker, 2004.
A class observes the stages of caterpillars to butterflies.  Picture Book.
Read-aloud K-2nd grade



Butterflies.  Seymour Simon.  Collins, 2011.
A 2012 Outstanding Science Trade Book for Students, we learn about the wonder of the 3,000 mile migration of monarchs, even though they have never made the journey before.  We also learn the difference between butterflies and moths, life cycle stages, body structure and interesting species.  Spectacular photos.
Read-aloud 2nd-4th grade


Butterflies and Moths.  Nic Bishop.  Scholastic, 2009.
All of Bishop’s books have jaw-dropping photos.  The book covers the life cycle, habitats, camouflage and other interesting facts.  Picture Book.
Read-aloud 2nd-5th grade


Butterfly.  Louise Spilsbury.  Heinemann, 2005.
Great photos and a question and answer format show the phases of a butterfly’s life cycle.  Read-aloud K-2nd grade



Butterfly Count.  Sneed B. Collard.  Holiday House, 2002.
This has a nice environmental message as Amy and her mother attend the annual Fourth of July Butterfly Count at a prairie restoration site.  Picture Book.
Read-aloud K-3rd grade


Butterfly House.  Eve Bunting.  Scholastic, 1999.
A girl and her grandfather rescue a caterpillar from a hungry bird, make a house for the larva and release the emergent painted lady butterfly.  As an adult, the girl believes butterflies are attracted to her yard because of her kind deed.  Lovely picture book.
Read-aloud K-3rd grade


A Butterfly is Patient.  Dianna Hutts Aston.  Chronicle Books, 2011.
An introduction to the life cycle and behaviors of one of nature’s most beautiful creatures.  Stunning watercolors. Picture Book.
Read-aloud 2nd-5th grade

Butterfly Tree.  Sandra Markle.  Peachtree, 2011.
On a September afternoon near Lake Erie, a girl spots a strange orange cloud.  She and her mother search for it in the woods where they find a tree that seems to be covered with orange leaves.  In fact, it is monarchs resting on their long migration to Mexico.  A very memorable sight.
Picture Book.
Read-aloud 1st-3rd grade

The Life Cycle of a Butterfly.  Bobbie Kalman.  Crabtree, 2002.
Explains the term “life cycle”, the stages of life and adverse affects of humans.
Good color photos.  Picture Book.
Read-aloud 1st-4th grade



Monarch and Milkweed.  Helen Frost.  Atheneum, 2008.
This beautiful book lyrically portrays the interconnectedness of the life cycles of the monarch butterfly and milkweed plant.  The acrylic and pastel illustrations are a perfect match for the text.  Picture Book.
Read-aloud 1st-3rd grade


A Place for Butterflies.  Melissa Stewart.  Peachtree, 2006.
Beautiful double-page spreads show a butterfly habitat while the sidebar gives specific info about the species that lives there.  The effects of human behavior are emphasized
as well as what we can do to ensure their survival.  Picture Book.
Read-aloud 2nd-5th grade


It’s a Butterfly’s Life.  Irene Kelly.  Holiday House, 2007.
Detailed illustrations, informative and entertaining text describe the life cycle of butterflies.  Picture Book.
Read-aloud K-3rd grade



Velma Gratch & the Way Cool Butterfly.  Alan Madison and Kevin Hawkes.  Schwartz & Wade, 2007.
First grade is tough for Velma who has to follow her two, nearly perfect older sisters.  She misbehaves to get attention until she discovers butterflies.  She learns all she can about the insect and on a field trip to the butterfly conservatory, a monarch lands on finger and stays there for 5 days.  She learns big words like metamorphosis, migration and conservatory.  Velma has found her gift. Picture Book.
Read-aloud K-2nd grade



Waiting for Wings.  Lois Ehlert.  Harcourt, 2001.
Ehlert’s signature, brilliant cut-paper collage and simple text show how several types of butterflies use flowers, while cleverly showing life cycle stages on smaller bottom pages.
Stunning.  Picture book.
Read-aloud K-2nd grade




fold-left fold-right
About the author

One Reply to Butterflies

  1. Wonderful! I wonder if any of these books show the specific species of caterpillars matched to the specific species of butterflies they become. THAT would be cool, too!

Leave a Reply