The earth is waking up from a long wintery nap and so are all the insects. It’s time for a preschool insect theme, and what better way to kick off spring than with these free preschool learn at home lesson plans about bugs and butterflies! In this post, you’ll find loads of ideas for a bugs and butterflies preschool theme, including literacy and book ideas, arts and crafts, plus math and science learning. You’ll find the whole bundle of FREE activities at the end of this post in a free download!
Free Bugs and Butterflies Activities for Preschoolers Including Free Preschool Lesson Plans
Kids love to learn and investigate bugs and butterflies! These insect activities for preschool are a perfect addition to your homeschool preschool lesson plans and offer a deeper dive into the insect world!
Best of all, this is just one set of lesson plans in our preschool curriculum free set of Learn at Home plans!
Frequently Asked Questions about Teaching a Bugs and Butterflies Theme
You may have a few questions about teaching this preschool theme! Check out these frequently asked questions for how to teach your preschoolers about bugs and butterflies.
Interacting with insects can help children appreciate and take care of nature. Learning about the purpose of insects is important when considering how the world works and appreciating their role in our environment. Plus, they can learn about the life cycle of the insect and its various stages and how we can relate to that as human beings.
Head outside! Exploring bugs is one of the best ways for preschoolers to learn and engage with insects. Feel free to add books to learn about different types of bugs that you may not see in your everyday life. Playful bug games or bug art is also a great way to learn more about the insect world.
This theme is a great springtime learning theme and goes well with gardening, rain and clouds, birds, or even the seasons.
* Learn At Home Preschool Lesson Plans BundleProduct on sale
Important Info About These Bugs and Butterflies Lesson Plans
These lesson plans for preschoolers are just one theme in a set of over 40 that will become a part of my free Learn At Home Preschool Lesson Plans.
The Learn at Home Preschool Lesson Plans are a set of free lesson plans you can use to teach your preschooler at home.
Each set of lesson plans is centered around a weekly theme and includes a minimum of 16 activities that can be done throughout the week. They are designed to be done at home with parents, but many preschool teachers are using these lesson plans, too!
Just glance over the lessons each day, gather the very few materials needed, and you’re ready to go!
All the preschool learning activities are quick and easy to set up, requiring very little (if any at all) prep and only require the most basic of household materials. This makes them especially easy for parents to implement…and this makes preschool teachers happy, too!
These activities also work wonderfully in the classroom, and if you’re a preschool teacher who is remotely teaching you can send these lesson plans to your student’s parents.
Engaging Preschool Activities for a Bugs and Butterflies Theme
These fun and engaging bugs and butterfly activities are perfect for homeschool preschool or just fun activities to do at home or at school. With literacy, math, and science ideas, plus art fun, this set of activities is sure to help your plan your bug theme!
Literacy Activities for Bugs and Butterflies Preschool Theme
Ladybug Visual Discrimination – Visual discrimination is an important skill that helps preschoolers see and recognize differences in objects. This transfers over to differences in letter and number shapes, too.
Try these Lady Bug Visual Discrimination Cards. If you don’t have access to a printer, try lining
up 3-5 similar toys and ask questions like, “Which one has___?”
Insect Pre-Writing Cards – These printable insect-themed shape cards doubles as both a math activity and a writing activity. But these pages aren’t limited to tracing with a pencil. Try having your preschooler push a button or coin along the shape outline. Or, place the pages in page protectors for a quick dry erase pocket that can be used over and over again.
Don’t Forget the Picture Books!
High-quality picture books set the stage for a new theme! We have picked out our favorite picture books for a bugs and butterflies preschool theme.
Math and Science Activities for a Bugs and Butterflies Preschool Theme
Butterfly Life Cycle Cards – These butterfly life cycle cards teach a little science as well as counting.
Preschoolers say the number on the card, use playdough to count the number and then count the number of butterflies that hatch. Grab them here: Butterfly Life Cycle Counting Cards.
Insect Fact Cards – This is a set of insect fact cards. There are twelve cards and each one features
a picture of an insect and strange facts about it. Grab them here: Insect Fact Cards. These cards don’t have to be printed to be enjoyed and used, so if you don’t have access to a printer, you can read these fact cards to your child using your computer, tablet, or phone.
Playful Activities for a Bugs and Butterflies Preschool Theme
Nature Hunt – Go on a nature hunt to find bugs and butterflies. Look under rocks and leaves. Look under logs and under loose tree bark. Even if there is still snow on the ground, you might find some bugs hibernating.
Paper Plate Insect – Paint a paper plate to look like a beetle. Add paper or pipe cleaner legs and googly eyes. Or use an empty egg carton and add pipe cleaner legs and make your own insect!
Simple Sensory Bin – Fill a bin or bowl with a shallow layer of dried black beans. Hide some toy bugs
inside the beans and invite your preschooler to find all the bugs. If you don’t have toy bugs at home, try a
homemade substitute like bottle caps, pom poms, small blocks, or even hand-drawn doodles.
Stuck Inside Activities for a Bugs and Butterflies Preschool Theme
Grasshopper Jump -Lay out some washcloths on the floor, in a row or scattered about, but so that they are about two or three feet apart. Now invite your preschooler to pretend to be a grasshopper and hop
from washcloth to washcloth. Challenge your preschooler to think of other bugs and how they
move and repeat the activity.
Playdough Bug Fossils – Whip up this fail-proof playdough recipe and make bug fossils. Just roll a pancake out of the play dough and push some toy insects into the play dough. Pretend the impressions are fossils. This activity is perfect for building fine motor skills!
Magazine Bug Hunt – Search through books, magazines, and newspapers for pictures of insects. Have your preschooler describe the insects.
Just Plain Fun Activities for a Bugs and Butterflies Preschool Theme
Blow Bubbles – Blowing bubbles itself is always fun for preschoolers. Take it up a notch by adding some kids’ music and preschoolers can dance while they pop the bubbles.
Free the Insects – Have some masking tape laying around? Tear off several small pieces and tape them to the table or countertop, then invite your preschooler to pick the tape off. Keep it bugs and butterfly theme related by actually taping toy plastic insects to the tabletop. Then your preschooler can ”free” the insects! Picking the tape is excellent fine motor work and will help develop their muscles for formal writing.
Get Online Activities for a Bugs and Butterflies Preschool Theme
Read a Book – Go to Storylineonline.net and listen to the book Please, Please Bees! by Gerald Kelly and read by Rashida Jones. Look for a red button under the video called “Activity Guides” to find more bug-related activities that pair with the book.
Insect Facts – Go to National Geographic Kids online and watch some of these videos of incredible insects. Ask your preschooler which insect they would want to be and why.
Butterfly Fingerplay – Practice counting, opposites, and rhyming by playing along with this Two Little
Butterflies Fingerplay. Try adding new verses based on things your preschooler is familiar with or needs help understanding.
Make your Bugs and Butterflies Theme Even Better!
Sometimes having extra theme-based items make for an exciting and engaging theme! These bugs and butterfly toys and counters bring extra buggy fun to your learning theme! Check out the list of our favorite bugs and butterfly toys below!
GET YOUR FREE BUGS AND BUTTERFLIES PRESCHOOL LESSON PLANS HERE
Want to include these bugs and butterfly activities in your lesson plans? Ready to grab your free printable lesson plans with all these bugs and butterfly themed activities for preschoolers?!
No problem. I’ve made a printable for you. Just fill out the form below and it will be sent to your inbox
I’m Sarah, an educator turned stay-at-home-mama of five! I’m the owner and creator of Stay At Home Educator, a website about intentional teaching and purposeful learning in the early childhood years. I’ve taught a range of levels, from preschool to college and a little bit of everything in between. Right now my focus is teaching my children and running a preschool from my home. Credentials include: Bachelors in Art, Masters in Curriculum and Instruction.
I love your content and would love this free printable but anytime I go to the ‘click here to download…” button, it’ll allow me to put my email in but will only spin continuously when I hit the subscribe button. It will never go through and all ow it to be fully submitted! So frustrating! It’ll allow me to subscribe on the normal button below but it doesn’t lead me to the free printable on this post. If that makes sense 🙂 I’d love to use these- any help would be appreciated!
Sarah Punkoney, MAT says
Email me at
and I can help you better.
Sarah Gosma says
I’m also Sarah and I teach Pre-K at a Catholic school and have a class of 29(!) children! I wanted to thank you for your resources that you’ve created to help teachers reach out to families and help the learning continue at home during this crazy time.
I’m wondering if there is something misfiring on the link to download, because when I click to submit, it just sits and spins and spins. Perhaps there is just a ton of traffic on the website right now, so that could be affecting it. I will try again in a bit.
Thank you, again, for your awesome ideas! One of these days, I’d like to find out more information about how to create these resources myself, as I have a TON of ideas and would love to share with others!
Sending my best to you and yours,
Sarah Punkoney, MAT says
Did you get the download? If not, email me at
and I can help you better. And you’re right. This post has received a ton of traction, so there are bound to be a few hiccups.
Clicked on the download button and filled out my information twice and have yet to receive the Bugs and Butterflies packet. Please advise. I’m excited to start it with my little “bug.”
Sarah Punkoney, MAT says
Hi Jen. Email me at
and I can help you better.
Beth Henderson says
Thank you so much for this excellent resource. I teach special needs pre-k and this was so helpful to my families who are now at home due to Covid-19. I’m hoping that you will have more resources such as this available in the near future.
Sarah Punkoney, MAT says
You are very welcome, Beth. I will keep publishing lesson plans like these as long as there is a need.
thank you so much for the lessons
any fun ideas for mothers day
Our local Neighbourhood House provides for many Children’s Services including:-Mother Goose, Playgroup, 3 Year Old Kinder as well as Child Care three days a week. Although our centre remains open no children are attending due to parent’s concerns about the virus.
I read one of the comments above regarding pre-schoolers and the lack of materials that parents may have at home for them to use to keep them actively occupied. As I am still going into work on a daily basis and the children are not required to be Home Schooled due to their age we have been working on providing appropriate age group activity packs for parents to collect and use with their children at home. These include a variety of paper, paint, clag, chalk, glitter, confetti, crayons and a sheet giving suggestions that can be used by parents to make use of what is in their pack.
With our 3 Year Old Kinder group they have received the same basic package but also the craft, literacy and numeracy activities, pre cut and slipped into plastic pockets, with sample pictures and instructions and any additional materials that they may need.an that we would have been doing with them if they were attending the sessions. The response from parents has been fantastic and they are also emailing us the pictures of their children completing their activities which we respond to and will be able to continue adding these to the individual portfolios that the children get at the end of the year. With this group we will be providing the activity packages on a monthly basis allowing us to continue with our planned program ensuring the continued development of each child.
You may ask where do the supplies for these packs come from but if you think about it you are only using what you would be using during the term anyway with the children. The only difference is that you are providing parents with the resources but more importantly as the educator you are continuing with engaging with both your parents and their children.
Cheers Carol from Australia
Sarah Punkoney, MAT says
I love the work your center is doing! What a blessing it is for your preschoolers!