Springtime is a great time to get out and talk a walk. There are so many animals coming out from the winter, babies being born, and buds coming out on flowers and trees. One of the many things you can look for is the Monarch Butterfly.
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Your Backyard: Life and Journey of the Amazing Monarch Butterfly
The Crowe family did yet another spectacular job in giving glory to our Creator with their newest DVD, Your Backyard: Life and Journey of the Amazing Monarch Butterfly. The Crowe children star in and lead us on a learning adventure. Our hosts:
- Taylor, First Born Son, Backyard Scientist
- Samuel, Second Born Son, Monarch Netter
- Grace, Third Born Child, Monarch Spotter
Our impressions of the Monarch DVD include:
Pointing to the Creator: I was struck with the incredible detail of the monarch butterfly, the exquisite design. The beauty of the Creator’s plan. Just one example of His plan is the beautiful image, above, of the milkweed plant. Crowe’s Nest explains that the journey of the monarch coincides with spring and the emergence of milkweed.
“Are you ever simply amazed at God’s goodness? Down to the very last detail. Everything. So beautiful. So purposeful and so orderly.” ~Samuel Crowe
Seeking to learn from experts: What better way to learn than from those who have devoted their life’s work to learning all they can about the monarch butterfly? Taylor, Samuel and Grace visit with Destiny Phillips who teaches the Crowe children how to find monarch eggs in a field of milkweed and other nectar sources. Ms. Phillips also:
- takes the Crowe children on a field trip to the nature center where she raises hundreds of butterflies.
- shows viewers how to tag monarchs and participate in monarch watch via University of Kansas.
- points out the differences in male and female monarchs.
The Crowe children also include the viewers on a visit with Mr. Poirier – a Creation Scientist, author and musician. From the Crowe’s Nest Media site: “87-year-young Mr. Poirier is such a delight! With a career that includes designing the radal pulse altimeter used in the Apollo 11 moon missions, Mr. Poirier’s fascination of the monarch’s incredible navigational ability led him to do extensive research, writing several books about the amazing monarch!”
Teaching with beautiful video: the quality of the filming is impressive. We stopped the time lapse of the life cycle several times because we were simply amazed at what we saw! “Would you like to see a magnified view of the butterfly emerging?” ~Samuel Crowe
Music that praises the Father: This is My Father’s World, other hymns and classical music play gently in the background.
Fun Facts: Animated Professor Solomon, the Owl, pops in for a visit throughout the DVD, sharing the wisdom of God’s design plus simply amazing facts about the monarch butterfly. He often uses his ‘Owlvision’ TV screen to teach.
Humor! We enjoyed the clever choice of sound effects throughout. Samuel’s description of his ‘famed’ monarch netting is fun – complete with slow motion.
A homeschool unit study! You can build an entire unit study around the Life and Journey of the Amazing Monarch Butterfly DVD – right in your own backyard! Watch the DVD several times to learn not only the life cycle of the butterfly but migration, all about the milkweed plant, raising butterflies, netting and more.
“God designed the monarch to have four distinct stages of life.” ~ Taylor Crowe
Inspiration: You might even be inspired to raise monarchs. You can learn how in the bonus features of the DVD. You may even wish to create an environment in your own backyard to welcome butterflies. A backyard butterfly haven!
See what all we learned and enjoyed? Just a sampling of what is included:
- Time elapse of caterpillar hatching from egg
- Experts showing how to find monarch eggs and caterpillars – which plants to search and how to look on the underneath of leaves
- How to net and gently hold butterflies. Plus a fun instant replay of Samuel netting a monarch!
- Differences and comparison between butterflies who mimic monarch butterflies
- The complete life cycle of a butterfly
- Tips for tagging with 1, 2, 3 steps
After watching the DVD, my children and I were excited. They asked if we could do a study of the life cycle of the butterfly again. My daughter found paper and pencil and sketched a butterfly right then!
Here are just a few reactions from my children while we enjoyed Your Backyard: DVD
- “Oh my! That’s awesome!” ~ 14-year-old
- “The butterfly’s heart reforms, Mama!” ~ nine-year-old
- “Mama! It turned into a butterfly!” ~ four-year-old
- We decided we’d like Crowe’s Nest Media shirts like the Crowe children wear in the DVD!
We then enjoyed the nearly 45 minutes of bonus features, including:
- How to raise monarchs
- Ordering tags
- Mr. Jules Poirier’s testimony
- Behind the scenes
- About the bottom shelf
- Professor Solomon’s quiz
- Your Backyard Trailer
- This is My Father’s World
In summary, I am grateful to Crowe’s Nest Media for finding, researching and pointing out how much there is to learn about the monarch butterfly. This God-honoring production left us excited to learn more, smiling at a family enjoying working together and teaching, and thankful to a God who designs the heavens and the earth.
Also from Crowe’s Nest Media – Your Backyard Birding
More on Butterflies
– January 2012