DIY Monarch Butterfly Model Project

Last month, my son came home from school with this:

Butterfly Project Assignment and worksheet2

The class had to make monarch butterfly models. My first thought was “Really? Kindergarteners have to do projects now?” I don’t remember having to do projects in Kindergarten, but I guess the times have now changed.

After reviewing the assignment, I thought about it for a few minutes, but really didn’t have any ideas of how to make this butterfly model.  Later on that night I headed online to find some motivation.

I found some really great ideas online and settled on a monarch butterfly model made using an egg carton.

My son wanted to color the egg carton, I agreed, but I didn’t think it would be easy to color using simple crayons.  I also needed a few more supplies so I headed to WalMart to see what I could find.

I decided that the butterfly wings would be made out of poster board and found that WalMart had a huge selection to choose from.

poster board selection at WalMart

I also checked out the Elmer’s Display and picked up a few more supplies.

Elmers supplies at WalMart

These are the supplies we used for the monarch butterfly model project:

Egg carton

Butterfly model project supplies

I had heard good things about the Elmer’s Painters Paint Markers you see pictured above.  They can be used on many different surfaces from paper, ceramic, and wood, to plastic, metal, and glass. And they dry very quickly. They are available in a variety of colors and retail for $1.97 for each individual marker.

How To Make a Model of a Monarch Butterfly


  • Egg Carton
  • Elmer’s Painters Paint Markers – we used black, white, yellow and orange, but you can use whatever colors you like
  • Poster Board
  • Crayons
  • X-Acto Gripster Soft Grip Knife
  • Pipe cleaner

First, I cut the Egg Carton using the X-Acto Gripster Soft Grip Knife.

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Then my son got to work coloring the egg carton using the Painters Paint Markers.

Adding color to the egg carton

My son wanted to make a Monarch butterfly, so he used yellow, black and white markers which are the colors of the Monarch butterfly caterpillar.  One thing I didn’t realize when I was purchasing the Elmer’s Painters Paint Markers, is that they offer a different variety of tip sizes.  The black marker I purchased was a fine tipped one which he found a bit difficult to use.

Here is the caterpillar part completely painted.

Painted Monarch Caterpillar

Next we worked on the butterfly wings.  I found a template online, traced it onto the poster board and then my son cut it out.  We did this twice.

Butterfly wing Template

Then I made some freehand ovals to the wings to mimic the look of a Monarch Butterfly and my son got to work adding some color to them.  He colored the outer part of the wing first using black crayon. Then he colored the ovals using the orange marker for a nice pop of color.

Painting the butterfly wings

Here are the completed butterfly wings.

Completed butterfly wings for monarch butterfly model

I then poked small holes into the top of the egg carton to make the antennae and then attached the wings to the egg carton using glue dots.  Here is the completed project.

The completed monarch butterfly model project

My son then completed the worksheet and we sent it off to school. It was displayed at the science fair for all to see!

Butterfly project displayed at science fair

You can find more information on Elmer’s Painters here:

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About the author


Diane is a New Jersey-based writer and blogger. She is a wife and the mom of a 13-year old boy. Through her blog, she wants to inspire moms to find Zen in their lives while offering practical tips and other valuable information to help families deal with everyday issues. Contact her at


DIY Monarch Butterfly Model Project

by Diane time to read: 2 min