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Not So Lazy Days: Watercolor wings keep memories from flying away

Updated on June 23, 2011
A completed dragonfly and butterfly enjoy the garden.
A completed dragonfly and butterfly enjoy the garden. | Source
The first step.
The first step. | Source

Arts & Crafts

As you may have read, yesterday we visited the Rancocas Nature Center. One of guest appearances which stopped the boys in their tracks was a dragonfly resting on the trail path.

The dragonfly stayed long enough so the boys could study it's, I guess, prism-like wings, reflecting light and the colors around them. In this case, the wings gave off a blue-green color. (Dragonfly wings are transparent, as was seen later when one was flying by our heads.)

To remember this trip and the previous one to the nature center, we made watercolor dragonflies and butterflies today.


  • watercolor paint and paint brushes
  • construction paper
  • cup of water
  • scissors
  • glue

(Tip: You may want to make a sample first for the kids.)

First, using your desired colors, paint a white or off-white sheet of construction paper completely. Sweep the colors randomly across the sheet, blending them together. Let the paint dry.

Next, fold your painted paper in half and cut out wings on the fold to make each side of the wings mirror images. For a dragonfly, cut out two thin wings, looking like folded popsicle sticks, if you could fold popsicle sticks in half. For the butterfly, cut out a shape that looks like the outline of the letter "B."

Using a black or brown sheet of construction paper, cut out the body (or bodies, depending on how many you're making)-- a long abdomen with a round head.

Last, glue on the wings. For the dragonfly, cross the wings into an "X," glue together, then glue the body to the wings.

Let the paper insects fly around the house or in your backyard garden. If your insects are pretty enough to be displayed, either stick them to the walls with your favorite removable adhesive (Fun Tac, 3M Strips, etc) or attach fishing wire to the wings and hang them from the ceiling.

About the Not So Lazy Days series

I've challenged myself to find a new activity to do five days a week every week of the kids' summer vacation. Activities will fall under one of three categories: Arts & Crafts, Sports & Games or Field Trips. Follow me on Twitter @readallaboutsam for immediate updates on posts!


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    • Esmeowl12 profile image

      Cindy A. Johnson 6 years ago from Sevierville, TN

      Dragonflies are one of my favorites! These are great. Keep up the good work!