Friday, August 24, 2012

Fledging a Child to Bird Watching - Part II

 With birds coming and going from the new feeder, it may be time to begin a feeder list. For a young child, the list should be short, simple and visual. I have thrown together a sample list to illustrate one possible format, using the common feeder birds of Newfoundland. The child can tick off the bird many times, every time s/he sees it.  Once this group of birds become well-known, more birds can be introduced.
When I looked around the Internet, I couldn't find many child-friendly bird exercises.  There is clearly a need as a module on birds could very easily be integrated into the school program at a very early stage.  I developed a simple little work sheet that shows a male, female and immature or molting bird, each of the same species. At the bottom of the page I added a few possible questions.  Also a matching sheet could be prepared where lines are drawn from the male to the female of the same species. The possibilities are endless.
With the help of Photoshop (as with the activity sheets above), I created a coloring sheet.  I certainly didn't perfect this one, because I think there are too many lines on this rendition. Nevertheless, this page offers an idea of how yet another activity can be developed.

Depending on the age of the child, s/he may even be able to develop some of these activity sheets on their own.

Overall, activities should be varied, suited to the interest and age of the child, and drive the learning process.

Once the child can identify a few birds, it may be time to take a little field trip. More on that in a future post.

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