Keeping Butterflies Afloat

Keeping Butterflies Afloat photo

Idle Hour Elementary School students enrolled in Renee Healy’s second-grade class recently learned how the environment has affected the size of the butterfly population on Long Island, and what they could do to help.

With assistance from Sally Wellinger of the Long Island Explorium in Port Jefferson, Ms. Healy’s students watched an interactive video program that explained the value of butterflies, and how changes in the landscape have made it difficult for butterflies to spread pollen and survive. Students were encouraged to help revive the butterfly population by spreading plant seeds, and engaged in an activity which utilized clay, catapults and their creative talents. 
Seeds from plants local to Long Island such as goldenrod, cardinal flower and joe-pye weed were given to the students who then rolled those seeds into a ball of clay. They worked collaboratively to create innovative models of instruments that could be used to send those seed balls into an “island” which was set up in the classroom.

The Long Island Explorium encourages young students to explore and play together with science-based exhibits and activities.