Learning About Birds, Part 2
As mentioned in Part 1 of this series, in the weeks that followed our Montessori classroom visit from Charlie the Congo African Grey Parrot and Horton the Citron Crested Cockatoo, we have learned songs and finger plays about birds and have implemented a number of different bird activities to extend the theme and enrich our Montessori preschool students’ learning experiences.
A few of the extensions we have implemented in our Montessori preschool classroom include the following:
Learning About Birds with Fun Montessori Preschool Classroom ActivitiesFeather Sorting: Charlie and Horton’s owner brought in a picture of each of the parrots as well as a collection of their feathers. I decided to create a sorting activity and my Montessori students have really enjoyed it. The child places both pictures on a mat and then sorts the feathers by looking at the picture and deciding whether the feather came from ‘Charlie’ or ‘Horton.’
Eggshell Collages: We sent home a note to our Montessori parents asking them to save well washed, clean eggshells and dye them with springtime pastels. The children then used a mortar and pestle to crush the dyed eggshells into small pieces and then used glue to apply the eggshells to construction paper eggs.
Parts of Bird Nomenclature: The children have also enjoyed learning about the parts of a bird and the function of each of the parts. They have created their own books, posters as well as labeled their own drawings.
Feather Painting: On the art shelf in our Montessori classroom, we created a painting tray with different types of feathers, paper and paint. The children have had great fun experimenting with different paint consistencies and types of feathers.
Birdseed Collages: For the art shelf, we created a tray with bird seed, paper and white glue. The children enjoyed drizzling glue onto the paper and then sprinkling the birdseed over the glue. Some of the designs were very unique and no two were alike!
Bird Craft: I cut out several different bird templates on colored poster board and the children have used them for collages, sponge painting, and have especially enjoyed gluing on feathers to make their birds come to life!
Bird Sorting: Using tongs to pick up little penguins and sort them according to color has definitely been a popular activity with the children, especially the younger ones and the tongs are wonderful tools for refining their fine motor control.
Bird Clothespins: I was so excited when I found little bird clothespins at my local dollar store and knew exactly what I wanted to do with them. Inside each of the three colorful eggs, I placed 4 or 5 bird clothespins. The student’s job is to open each egg, remove the clothespins and clip them around the edge of the “nest” (basket). This activity always seems to be in use and again is wonderful for strengthening a young children fingers!
Robin's Eggs: After looking at pictures of a robin’s egg, we decided it would be fun to make our own robin eggs. I cut several eggs out of poster board and the children painted them blue and sprinkled them with sand to give them a specked effect!
Bird Finger Plays: The children have enjoyed learning different finger plays and I have included a few of the favorites below.
Here's a nest for Robin, (Cup hands to form nest) Here's a hive for Bee, (Fingertips together to form hive) Here's a hole for Rabbit, (Fingertips together to form hole) And here’s a house for me. (Interlock fingers, knuckles up, for house)
Two little birds sat up on a wall, (two fingers placed on each shoulder) One named Peter, one named Paul (raise both fingers) Fly away Peter, fly away Paul (wiggle fingers as you move arm behind your back in arc.) Come back Peter, come back Paul. (bring hands in front, one at a time)
Two little blackbirds, (hands closed with thumbs straight up for birds) Sitting on a hill, One named Jack, (wiggle one thumb) The other named Jill. (wiggle other thumb) Fly away Jack (toss one hand at a time over shoulder) Fly away Jill. Come back Jack (bring back hands one at a time) Come back Jill.
Up in the sky, the little birds fly. (flutter outstretched hands) Down in their nests the little birds rest. (lower hands into lap) With a wing on the left, and a wing on the right, (wave left hand, then right) The dear little birdies sleep all night. (fold hands under cheek)
A nest for Ruby Redbreast (cup hands) A hive for Betty Bee (2 hands form a hive) A hole for Jackie Rabbit (circle with thumb and index finger) And a little bed for me (hands together on cheek and close eyes)
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