Outdoor Classroom: Little Children & Bird "Habitats"!


Little (and big) kids really love feeding the wild birds, so why not give them lots of learning experiences caring for the birds?!
4 yr olds working together to fill the wild bird feeder in the 
Montessori Preschool Outdoor Classroom
Photo by Carolyn at Magical Movement Company

These preschoolers are working together to put wild bird seed in the feeder. The large container that holds the seed is a fun sensory experience for young children and gathering the seed in the hand is a wonderful "Whole Hand Transfer" activity that Montessori teachers love to provide for children!
Since young children love to carry buckets I recommend storing the bird seed in a large container with a tight-fitting lid and study handle. I found the large bird food container in the picture above at my local Petco. There's a good size bird food container at Amazon, too: 7 Pound Wild Bird Seed Container.

My favorite bird feeders are the ones made of clear acrylic so that the children can easily see the level of seed in the feeder. I think the sturdy Duncraft brand is great...they last for many years!

You can find them at  Wild Birds Unlimited stores or at the on-line store for Duncraft:Duncraft Acrylic Bird Feeder

The following is also a lovely clear acrylic feeder that is available at Amazon. Here's the link Acrylic bird feeders.

These feeders don't always have to be mounted on windows, either. The suction cup can be removed and then there is a hole for attaching the feeder to a fence if that works better in your environment. 

Of course, the feeder should be hung high enough for the birds to feel comfortable coming to visit and this means it will be out of the children's reach. These 4 yr olds are preparing to fill the bird feeder and so they are carrying the step ladder over to the feeding station!

Cooperation! Carrying a ladder is an important part of feeding 
the birds.
Photo by Carolyn at Magical Movement Company 

You don't really have to worry about the seed that happens to miss the feeder and land on the ground below...some birds are ground feeders, like these lovely Mourning Doves.

Mourning Doves feed on the seed that fell from the wild bird feeder on the fence
Photo by Carolyn at Magical Movement Company

I'll be writing future posts with more ideas for creating and nurturing a wild bird habitat in your outdoor environment. Have fun feeding the birds!


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