As I’ve mentioned I’ve been trying to get my kids outside as much as possible. I love learning about nature. So this month we are learning about birds. I’d like to share with you different resources we’re using. These are cards of Birds found in Ontario (and much of the rest of Eastern North America). I created these to use with my kids. There are so many way you could use them – As 3 Part Cards, Matching games, art work, books, etc…
Montessori Print Shop has some great materials about birds including parts of the bird, books, bird feet, bird nests, bird beaks, cutting strips and more.
I also found this amazing site. It’s interactive and you can learn a ton about birds including their songs and calls. http://biology.allaboutbirds.org/#home-page-top They also have this site for kids: http://www.birdsleuth.org/ which has materials for homeschoolers! I purchased this lovely little book by Thornton W Burgess. It’s like a story but gives information and details about all different backyard birds in an interesting way. This copy has drawings but unfortunately they’re black and white, if you could find a version with the original colour pictures that would be a bonus.
We also got this bird book which is great for beginners. Simple, not overwhelming, and small enough to tuck into a bag or even back pocket to take with you bird watching.
Some activities we’re doing is we painted bird houses from the dollar store and we made a bird bath from a plastic container and a tree stump. There are lots of DIY bird bath ideas on Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/search/pins/?q=diy%20bird%20bath We haven’t put up any bird feeder yet because we have a squirrel problem in our area. My husband finally got the squirrels out of our porch roof so he wouldn’t be happy if I was feeding them (nor would my neighbours). I’m looking at some squirrel proof options but those animals are pretty smart and persistent. The other option is a hummingbird feeder. Also we have a bird feeder up at the cottage and a hummingbird feeder so I’m planing to do lots of bird watching up there with the Pumpkins.
Putting up a birdhouse is more than actually using a dollar store one. You want to discourage some types of birds like Starlings and House Sparrows and so you want a bird houses with certain specifications. This site gives more information: http://www.birdwatching-bliss.com/bird-house-plans.html
Learning about birds is really fun, especially because they’re something you’re hearing and seeing every day. My daycare kids can now pick out the sound of the Morning Dove and the Chickadee. They can identify some birds by site too though we mostly see Grackles, Starlings and Sparrows in our neighbourhood. There are Barn Swallows nesting at my In-Law’s place and it was so amazing to watch them dive and swoop around us as we sat outside last weekend and I was really intrigued to see how they attached their nest to the wall with mud. I think they’re my favourite bird. What I love about home schooling is all the interesting things I’m learning! I found this video clip of Starlings flying together just mind boggling. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DmO4Ellgmd0