All Activities Issue - Nature: Bird Watching
- Grades: PreK–K
Children can enjoy observing and feeding their fine feathered friends.
Ready-To-Use Teaching Ideas
- Small bowl
- Slices of stale bread
- Cookie cutters
- Peanut butter
- Tongue depressors
- Pieces of yarn
Objective: Through this multi-sensory craft activity, children will be able to observe and feed birds in their own habitat.
In Advance: Hang pictures of birds at children's eye level around your room. Put out a bowl of bird seed in the science center for children to explore, so they can become familiar with what birds eat.
- Gather children in a circle and ask, "What do birds eat? Do any of you have a pet bird?" Encourage children to tell you everything they know about birds.
- Place stale bread, cookie cutters, and the bowl of birdseed on a table. Help children to put on smocks and ask them to gather around. Invite them to use cookie cutters to cut shapes from each piece of bread.
- Ask each child to use a tongue depressor to spread peanut butter on his bread shape. Then help children press the bread, peanut butter side down, into the birdseed. Thread a piece of yarn through the bread so that the completed feed can be hung from a tree.
- Go for a walk just outside your preschool or center, or to a park. Ask, "Where can we find birds?" Encourage children to become bird watchers by looking for birds in the surrounding area.
- Invite children to choose a tree and help them hang their bird feeders. Birds may be reluctant to eat if children are too close, so make sure they move away from the tree. Wait a while for birds to visit. Encourage children to close their eyes and listen for the sounds.
- You might want to introduce this chant while children wait for their feathered friends:
Little Birdie in a tree
Please come down and eat with me
- Go on another walk the next day to see if any more birds ate from the bird feeders. If the children choose a tree directly outside your building, they can observe their bird feeders from a window.
For younger children: Use large, simple cookie cutter shapes that children can use to cut the bread before spreading with peanut butter.
For older children: Make a simple chart to help children record the different kinds of birds that approach their feeders. Children can make simple drawings to indicate the types of birds they see at the feeders on their chart.
REMEMBER: It's best to do this activity early in the day so that children can have plenty of time to watch birds eat from the bird feeders they made.