Last week, our home preschool unit centered around birds. We had all sorts of fun pretending to fly like birds, making a giant nest out of blankets, learning about the parts of a bird, and making play dough birds and sticking feathers in them (see the bottom of this post for links to some of the great resources I used). My favorite activity (and Little Man’s, too) was when we made our own bird’s nests.
I’ve written before about our love of scavenger hunts, so I thought it would be fun to do a scavenger hunt to look for materials to build a nest, just like birds do.
I love taking books that we already love and making them more meaningful to my kids by connecting them to the real world. And that’s exactly what I did with this lesson. Before we headed out on our hunt, we read the book The Best Nest by P.D. Eastman. It’s a classic that I remember loving as a kid, and Little Man loves it, too. We’d read it before this activity, but this time I told him to pay special attention to what the birds use to build their nest.
I read the book, and then we talked about the things that the birds used. We grabbed a bag, and headed outside on a walk to become birds looking for building materials.
Here are some of the materials we used:
- pine needles
Once we were satisfied with our supplies (well, actually it started to rain, so we just decided we had enough), we headed home and got to work building our nest.
Little Man didn’t have a lot of patience for trying to weave together the materials into an actual, sturdy nest, but he did think it was great fun to shape it into a circle and then add Easter eggs. Seriously, this kid cannot get enough of Easter eggs! We really need another holiday to switch his focus.
If you’re working with older kids it would be awesome to challenge them to make their nest strong enough that they can pick it up and move it, or to withstand a windstorm (test their success with a hair dryer). Remember to focus on the learning process, though, and not the end result (otherwise you might end up with a meltdown over a collapsed nest).
All in all, it was a great activity for Little Man. It encompasses literacy skills and STEM exploration, which are so important. Mostly, it gave both of us a better appreciation for how HARD it is to build a nest. I’m pretty impressed with those little birdies and their architectural abilities.
Here are some links to other bird activities we enjoyed this week. Check them out!
Easy DIY Bird Feeders from The Many Little Joys
Bird Feather Matching from All Things Moms
Baby Bird Gets the Worm Sensory Bin from Modern Preschool
Feather Painting from Muchkins and Moms