Child Parent Program

National Science Week is from 14th to 22nd August

As National Science Week is celebrated in August it seemed like the ideal time to share a butterfly rhyme – so children can start to understand early scientific concepts and learn about the life cycle of the butterfly.

The theme for the 2010 National Science Week is Australian Biodiversity and there are thousands of butterflies which visit our cities, towns and bushland.  Look out for butterflies at your place.


Tune:  She’ll be coming round the mountain

There’s a tiny little egg on a leaf
Wiggle wiggle
There’s a tiny little egg on a leaf
Wiggle, wiggle
There a tiny little egg, just a tiny little egg
There’s a tiny little egg on a leaf
Wiggle wiggle

(Continue singing using the following verses)

There’s a tiny caterpillar on a leaf – wiggle wiggle
There’s a big, fat caterpillar on a leaf – munch, munch
There’s a shiny chrysalis hanging down – Shh! Shh!
There’s a pretty butterfly on a leaf – flutter, flutter
There’s a tiny little egg on a leaf – wiggle, wiggle

Birth to six months: Sing this simple song to your child in a quiet voice.  Have  your baby  lying on your lap or lying on a blanket on the floor.  Touch your baby constantly whilst doing the actions – eg wiggle wiggle.  You should be looking at your child’s face so you can observe how they are responding to the song.  Your baby should be looking at your face (and eyes) and will be watching your lips to see how this talking action works!  Staring into your child’s eyes and singing to them helps you both to form a secure attachment.

Six months to 5+ years: Sit your toddler or child on your knee facing you and help them to do all the actions in the song eg wiggle wiggle.  This will make it lots of fun.  When you sing the butterfly verse stand up and ‘ flutter’  around the room and gently land back in the chair.  Eventually your child will start to sing the words with you and predict the actions.  Older children can act out the Butterfly Life Cycle independently as you sing them the song.  If it becomes a favourite song then sing the song every day until they ask you to stop!!


Singing this song enriches your child’s early science vocabulary as you both sing about the various stages in the life cycle of the butterfly.  Using actions will assist your child to remember the new and different words of the song.  Children will gain more confidence as they participate in the repetition of the song and if they enjoy this rhyme will eventually perform this rhyme with little help from their carer.


This song helps young children to become aware of the life cycle of a butterfly, the variety of butterflies, their habitat and the way they move – making them more environmentally aware and learning early scientific concepts.


☺ Read the popular book “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” by Eric Carle to your child and talk about the changes from a small egg to a caterpillar to a beautiful butterfly.

☺ Make some simple butterflies to hang in your home.  Put lots of paint on one side of an A3 piece of paper and fold it over, pressing down the paint.  Open the paper and it will be a beautiful butterfly.  Cut it out and hang it.  You could even make a Butterfly Mobile.

☺ Draw pictures of butterflies and use lots of bright colours.

☺ Every time you go outside look for butterflies and watch how they move and observe the colours with your child.

☺ Flutter both your hands with thumbs entwined as a “sign” to denote a butterfly.  Every time you see a butterfly or sing a rhyme make this sign.  Your child will then be able to “tell” you when they see a butterfly improving their communication skills.

☺ With older children pretend to be butterflies and drape yourselves with old sheets and flap around the house.  Flap, flutter, wiggle, swoop, fly and land to go to sleep.

☺ With older children retell the life cycle of the butterfly - you can use the song or “The Very Hungry Caterpillar Book” and act out the story from egg to Butterfly.  Children could draw a diagram of the life cycle and might even realise it can be in a circle – the circle of life!!

☺ Borrow non-fiction books about butterflies from the library.  Look at the different varieties of butterflies and determine if any of the butterflies visit your garden.

☺ Plant some butterfly attracting plants in your garden – make a special Butterfly Garden so you can sit and quietly observe the variety of creatures which visit.

Other websites

Enjoy learning about butterflies and remember to have fun!