Activity

Symmetrical painting

Summary
Make a symmetrical butterfly (or other shape with two-fold symmetry) by folding a painting in half.
Science content
Biology: Features, Adaptations of Living Things (K, 1, 3, 7)
Materials
  • paper plate
  • red, yellow, blue paint (tempura)
  • cardboard template of half a butterfly (e.g. swallowtail, sulphur, monarch)
  • scissors to cut out
  • optional: pipe cleaner and tape to make antennae
Procedure

Fold the paper plate in half. Open it up and blob paint onto one half. Lay it on thick (this will generate veins in the wing).
Fold the plate over and smoosh to spread the paint out inside. Open up. If the paint is not covering the plate, add more paint, close and smoosh some more.
Let dry.
Fold over, lay the template over, and cut out. (Optional: tape a folded pipe cleaner on the head for antennae).
Relate to animals that have body symmetry.

Grades taught
Gr 1
Gr 2
Teaching site
New York Botanical Garden