Symmetry: Butterfly Wings

Butterfly wings are beautiful examples of symmetry, which means that the wings on one side of the body match the wings on the opposite side of the body. Instead of the word match, let’s say the wings are mirror images of each other. butterfly-symetry

Mirror images will perfectly fit together. When a butterfly folds its wings upward, they are perfect matches in size, shape as well as patterns.

A symmetrical figure has one or more lines of symmetry. A line of symmetry is a line along which a figure can be folded into congruent halves.

WOW!! They are congruent (the same shape and size).

Discover for Yourself

You can use an index card to make symmetrical butterfly wings. Note: An unlined index card works best for this activity. The bigger the card, the bigger the wings.

1. Fold the index card in half by placing the short sides together.

2. Draw butterfly wings on the folded card as shown.

3. Cutting through both layers of the card, cut around the wing drawing. DO NOT CUT ON THE FOLD.

4. Open up the cut out design.

5. Using liquid paints, such as water soluble acrylic paints or tempra paints, place dots of different colors on the wings as shown.

6. Fold the the wing in half along the fold line, and then with your fingers press the wings together.You want to spread the colored dots paint.

7. Unfold the wings and VOILA’ you have beautifully colored symmetrical butterfly wings.

Discover For Yourself:

How would the following affect the appearance of the butterfly wings?

1. changing the amount of paint used for each dot

2. the colors used for the dots

3. the number of dots used


Insects and Spiders

63961: Janice VanCleave"s Insects and Spiders: Mind-Boggling Experiments You Can Turn Into Science Fair Projects Janice VanCleave’s Insects and Spiders: Mind-Boggling Experiments You Can Turn Into Science Fair Projects