Butterfly Life Cycle Craft for Preschoolers

Use three types of pasta to show the different stages

Butterfly life cycle craft with pasta
Your preschooler can make this butterfly life cycle craft using supplies found around the house, including pasta!. Amanda Rock

 A popular science unit in preschool is to learn about the life cycle of butterflies. A great way to explain this process to little ones is to have them experience it first-hand, either through a butterfly life-cycle kit (Insect Lore [compare prices] has a wonderful one) or with a butterfly life cycle craft that walks them through each step.

Using common household items (a paper plate, markers, glue, and different shaped pastas), you can quickly help your little one put this craft together. Because this craft is so simple and the materials so inexpensive and plentiful -- you'll need three different types of pasta -- consider doing it as part of a playgroup, or if you are the class mom, as a class activity. 


  • White paper plate
  • Bean
  • Corkscrew pasta
  • Bowtie pasta
  • Shell pasta (small)
  • Markers
  • Glue

Get crafting!

  1. Help your preschooler draw two lines (making four quarters) in the middle of the paper plate. Number each quadrant 1, 2, 3, and 4. 
  2. Either using a computer printout (as shown above) or just writing with markers, write "egg" in the number one spot, "caterpillar" in the number two spot, "chrysalis" in the number three spot, and "butterfly in the number four spot.
  3. Glue the bean in the number one spot, the corkscrew pasta in the number two spot, the shell in the number three spot, and the bowtie in the number 4 spot.
  4. Add details to each glued item -- for example, give the butterfly antenna, draw a green leaf around the bean egg and the caterpillar, and a branch that the chrysalis can hang from. 

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