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We all know caterpillars become butterflies, but what really happens within the chrysalis?

In this article COSMOS science communicator, Imma Perfetto, with help from Associate Professor Darrell Kemp peers inside to show us that not all metamorphoses are created equal.  With 60% of all described animal species undergoing metamorphosis, using technology to enhance our knowledge of what takes place is key.  Use the article alongside Biological Science topics including reproduction, classification, and cells to further student knowledge and understanding of science in action.  The associated Teacher Resource includes a set of STEM Discovery Questions, use them to conduct class or small group discussions or to create an article review task.



The magic of metamorphosis

by Imma Perfetto

for COSMOS Magazine Issue 102

According to Associate Professor Darrell Kemp, from Macquarie University, 60% of all described animal species undergo metamorphosis, suggesting it must be a pretty useful way to live.

In COSMOS Magazines Issue 102, science communicator, Imma Perfetto, peers inside all things metamorphosis.  Working with Darrell Kemp, associate professor in biology at Macquarie University, Imma helps us understand how butterflies are the same creature as creepy, crawly caterpillars.  Imma and Darrell helps us learn more about the amazing transformation that happens for over 60% of all described species.

Join Imma and Darrell as they explore:

  • What is metamorphosis?
  • Why some animals metamorphose?
  • What happens inside the chrysalis?
  • How has medical technology helped us learn if caterpillars actually turn to soupy mush, before emerging as majestic butterflies?
  • and more.

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The teacher resource includes a student resource idea focusing on ‘Sharing Understanding’, ‘Investigating Content’, ‘Communicating & Collaborating’.  Students can demonstrate their understanding of the article content and related STEM knowledge via a set of STEM DISCOVERY QUESTIONS.  Focused on the development of content understanding, inquiry skills and information analysis.  Use the questions to conduct class or small group discussions, or create an individual review and reflection task.

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7-8 & 10
Learning Connections

Student Skill Summary

  • Discussion and Collaboration
  • Inquiry and Exploration