Students learn about the habits and characteristics of birds through reading, playing "memory," and making a bird feeder to attract specimens for observation.
- Grades: PreK–K
- Unit Plan:
Children learn about the habits and traits of birds.
- Understand that birds come from eggs.
- Identify characteristics of birds. (e.g. have feathers, come from eggs, use their beaks to eat)
- Multiple copies of bird tracks, such as a duck and sparrow
- Bird collage/chart from Lesson One
- K-W-L Chart from Lesson One
- 3 gummy worms for each child
- Paper plates
- Yellow construction paper
- Index cards
- 12 pictures of birds (2 matching pairs of 6 different birds)
- A variety of feathers
Set Up and Prepare
- Tape a variety of bird tracks on the wall. Find them on the Internet or in the book Animal Tracks by Arthur Dorros.
- Group your students for rotation through four independent centers. Set up the centers as follows:
Bird Memory Game: Glue the bird pictures onto index cards. Students will play a bird memory game.
Eat Like a Bird: Set out gummy worms and construction paper beaks. To make the beaks, fold a piece of yellow construction paper three times and then cut a triangle from the folded side alone. It will open up in a diamond shape. Staple each side and draw lines so it resembles a beak. Remind students how birds use their beaks to eat, and that they will practice this by holding the beaks with their hands and feeding themselves like a mother bird feeds her young. (Provide new plates with gummy worms for each child each time students rotate through this center.)
Draw and Glue Feathers on the Bird: Set out the Bird collage/chart from Lesson One, paper, crayons, glue, and feathers. Students will use the Bird collage/chart for ideas on how to draw and decorate their birds.
Bird Read-a-Thon: Provide non-fiction and fiction about birds. Students will read a few of these in this center.
Step 1: Before the children arrive, tape 15 tracks across the wall.
Step 2: Gather the children together to review the bird song from Lesson One. As you sing the song, display the bird collage/chart and encourage students to name the birds displayed. Name ones they do not know. Explain that all animals have body coverings to help them survive. Ask: What do birds have covering their bodies? (feathers) Tell the children that animals use different parts of their bodies to get food. Ask: What parts of their body do birds use to eat? (beaks, claws) Ask: Do birds come from eggs or their mother's bodies? (eggs)
Step 3: Explain that they will be going to different centers to explore magnificent birds. Explain the tasks for each of the four centers.
Step 1: Rotate students through the centers in their groups for about 10-15 minutes each.
Step 2: Gather children together to share what they learned. Add to the K-W-L Chart. Use a different color marker when writing student responses to indicate a new entry.
Supporting All Learners
When creating groups, combine high achievers with low or medium achievers.
Make bird feeders using an empty toilet paper roll. Spread peanut butter on the sides and roll it in birdseed. Hang with yarn in a place where the children can observe the birds and record their findings.
Ask the children to bring in a book or toy from home about birds to share.
Complete bird drawing with body covering.
- Did the children work well in their groups?
- Were the children engaged and on task the entire time?
- How might I do this lesson differently next time?
Observe how children interact in their groups. Note what children add to the K-W-L Chart.