MonarchLIVE--A Distance Learning Adventure

The annual migration cycle of the monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus) is one of the most spectacular events in the insect world. Every year, millions of delicate but hardy monarchs migrate thousands of miles from Canada and the United States to overwinter in just 12 mountain peaks in Michoacán, Mexico. 

This magical journey has also been deemed an “endangered natural phenomenon.” This species and its migration are dependent on conservation of habitats in all three North American countries – United States, Canada,  and Mexico.

Join MonarchLIVE in this magical and mysterious journey!

Schoolchildren across the country are studying monarch butterflies, learning about their fascinating life cycle, raising monarchs to be released, planting gardens, and becoming knowledgeable conservationists. MonarchLIVE: A Distance Learning Adventure connects classrooms that are studying monarchs and spotlight current monarch conservation and research being done by K-12 students, citizens, and university scientists.     

The project integrates distance-learning methods with activities that encourage students to create wildlife habitat and investigate their own schoolyards. Teachers will be able to take their students on virtual field trips and participate in live webcasts, satellite broadcasts, and/or teleconferencing. The project will underscore the efforts of K-12 teachers and students, scientists and citizens to document, understand, and preserve this incredible insect.  Scientists and conservationists will conduct lesson plans on site so that students may learn about the monarch butterfly’s annual life cycle of breeding, migrating and overwintering. The highlight of this project was a live electronic field trip from Michoacán, Mexico in February 2009.

The project was available free to classrooms and approximately 500,000 students across the Northern Hemisphere. All program materials and archived broadcasts are available through the interactive website at