Mommy’s game plan for Spring: literacy-centered activities (Part 1)

1. Origami Spring wreath + Butterfly Lifecycle

We have 3 weeks of Spring holiday, and as our first activity, I wanted to introduce life-cycles to Kai. We began by reading life-cycle related books that we already have in English, Chinese and Japanese.

Spring books:

  1. “In the Small Small Pond” by Denise Fleming (here)
  2. “Dandelions: Stars in the Grass” by Mia Posada (here)
  3. なぜなぜ1クイズ絵本三月のふしぎ (part of a series)
  4. 好朋友阅读双周刊 – subscription magazine (here)
  5. “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” in Chinese (here)

Here are other recommendations of SPRING books in English (here)

Inspired by other origami Instagram accounts, we started doing origami for special occasions as a mommy-son activity since Kai and I both love arts and craft. I always try to integrate origami with literacy.

Here were some origami projects from the past!

“Raining hearts” and making fortune cookies- Valentines Day books and activities (here)

Origami Chinese Zodiac + Literacy (here)

Origami Advent calendar (10-day countdown)to promote writing (here)

I have listed all the videos that we used below:


(I did this myself after we completed all the origami)

Level of difficulty: easy

Easter egg

Level of difficulty: easy


Level of difficulty: easy

( I folded the top, Kai folded the bottom and I was the one to combined the top and bottom wings)


Level of difficulty: easy


Level of difficulty: medium

Prior to this activity, we have already learned about spring through the lessons I had planned, so we did a quick review in Chinese using Fortune Cookie Mom’s Spring resources I signed up for (here). They are FREE and are simple enough for Kai to do independently!

1. For the life-cycle portion of our project, Kai wanted to focus on the butterfly life-cycle, so after reading 好饿的毛毛虫, Kai drew the stages of the lifecycle on sticky notes. There are many worksheets that are available online, but this is low-prep, and easiest for us!

2. We talked about the stages of the butterfly lifecycle, and Kai drew each sticky note one by one labelling each stage English.

I also showed an English video to reinforce the butterfly lifecycle (here)

3. We then watched a Chinese video on the butterfly lifecycle here, and Kai labelled each stage in Chinese. I wrote the characters on the whiteboard and Kai copied them down.

4. Finally, to write a paragraph, I introduced sequence words to Kai on sticky notes, and had him arrange them in order as I narrate the butterfly lifecycle.

5. Finally, I wrote out the sentences, had Kai stick the sequence words and fill in the blanks. This is heavily scaffolded as I only wanted Kai to learn the key terms, and sequential words. I didn’t need him to write out the entire sentences!

Later this week, we are going to hunt for caterpillars either in the Botanic Garden or in our condo! Do you have any suggestions on where else I could take him in Singapore where we are likely to find butterflies?

2. Spring-themed active-learning journals

For my 3.5 years old, I have created these drawing sheets to practice for the formation of the alphabets. These activities, inspired by @literacyinmotion were simple to create, but effective in building concentration and fine-motor and pre-drawing skills. Since my son is still young, I let him either hold a marker rather than a fat crayon. I have also used triangular crayons, which help promote proper writing grip.

Please take a look at Mommy’s game plan for Spring: literacy-centered activities (Part 2) >> here for more ideas.

Published by Ms Claudia L. Kimura

Apple Distinguished Educator, Class of 2015 Primary school teacher, technology coordinator Not just a regular mom, but a teacher-mom Mom of 2 boys, stepmom of 3 boys

2 thoughts on “Mommy’s game plan for Spring: literacy-centered activities (Part 1)

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