Language & Literature, Science, Nature and Tech

Where did the Word Butterfly Come From?

Millie explained recently what etymology means, and fitting to this week’s theme of Jump! Into Biology, we are are asking ‘where did the word butterfly come from?’.
Who hasn’t seen a butterfly flitting by and  enjoyed seeing the flutter of its wings? But have you ever considered why it came to be called “butterfly”? Perhaps you have wondered whether there used to be a large number of yellow, butter-coloured butterflies who gave their name to the whole species?

Well, there is a nice little story attached to the name of the butterfly. In the past, there was a general belief that butterflies ate milk and butter. This probably came about because of the way that flies hover over any food at all that’s left out, and butterflies may have been seen hovering over uncovered pails of milk and butter. Not only that, but this belief developed to encompass the idea that butterflies were either sent out by witches to steal butter, or were in fact, witches themselves, disguised as butterflies. Quite why the witches were out to steal the butter, we don’t know!

Read More...

Events, Written By You

The Girlguide Girls’ Attitude Survey – Written By You

My name is Isla Whateley, I’m a 17-year-old Girlguiding member from Glasgow and a member of the charity’s youth panel Advocate. We discuss issues affecting girls and young women and look for ways to seek change.
 Every year, Girlguiding publishes research into the opinions of girls and young women in the UK, called the Girls’ Attitude Survey.  The findings from the latest report show that girls and young women are experiencing shocking levels of everyday sexism and discrimination at school, on the street and online.
 For example, 75 per cent of girls aged 11-12 say sexism affects most areas of their life, 87 per cent think women are judged more for looks than ability and one in five 7-11 year-olds say they have been on a diet.

Read More...

Art & History, Language & Literature

Jump! into Etymology for Kids

Have you ever thought about languages, and how they develop over time?
Why do we say ‘tree’ when we look at a one of those green things outside our window, and where did the word ‘rose’ come from? (Can you tell that I am looking out of my window for inspiration?)
When we look at the links between the words that we use in English and those in a different country, we often find similarities. Information is the same in English, as in German and French, although the pronunciation is different.
The study of words is called etymology, and today Millie is going to explain a bit more about this, and tell us a bit about the word ‘JUMP’.

Read More...