I have previously shown some YouTube videos on butterfly life cycle and after our 2013 year end family trip to Penang which we visited the butterfly farm, our almost 5 years old seems to be more and more interested in caterpillars and butterflies.
On 14th January 2014, we found this caterpillar earlier in the morning and I told Benjamin that we will leave it where it is and continue to monitor it until it becomes a butterfly. Noon came and we saw the caterpillar on a leaf lying on the porch floor, torn away from the plant. Grandma wanted to get rid of it.
As much as I'm feeling the chills seeing creepy crawlies like this, the sight of Ben's sad face that his caterpillar is homeless and possibly facing death soon made me decided to give it a home, I have no idea how to keep it (alive that is) and haphazardly found a small container, plucked some leaves from the same plant where we found the caterpillar and chucked everything inside, covering the container with a mesh cloth for air circulation. I also took a picture and posted it on my Facebook page asking what else I need to take note of in caring for the caterpillar. Some fans shared some website links on raising a caterpillar and soon, we gained more information and when daddy got home, he took charge and adviced us what else to take note of - No caterpillar in our bedroom ESPECIALLY when the air-conditioning unit is on.
Btw, Ben named the caterpillar Ernie and says it is his pet. It's about half an inch long only when we found it on our lime pot plant. By day 3, it grew to about an inch long, much plumper and greener. I just shivers everytime I see it.
Now aside from the ewwwwww effect Ernie gave me EVERYTIME I looked at it, as a parent, I do think raising a caterpillar as a pet is good because:
* Our boy has been bugging us to get him a puppy and we think he is too young still to take care of a puppy, so a caterpillar is an easy starter (I hope!)
* Our kiddos can see with their own eyes, the life cycle of a butterfly and the transformation of its life phase.
* Teach our kiddo how to take care of another life being, to be responsible, maintain cleanliness and hygiene. Every morning before I send him to his preK, I would cut a fresh batch of leaves (still attached to the twigs) and ensure that our boy cleans up Ernie's tank (daddy normally helps and supervises the cleaning process)
* Teach our kiddo on basic necessities to survive - water, air, space, food, etc.
* Teach our kiddo to be patient, to wait for each transformation and not be in a hurry to see the final results, to slowly cherish each moment and to know the fact that it takes time for something to grow, change, etc.
So there you go! Thanks for reading my post! Wish us luck in raising a caterpillar!
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