Make Like a Bird and Nest

What You Need:

  • Sticks
  • Grass
  • Leaves
  • Pine needles
  • Newspaper
  • Paper
  • Pen or pencil

What You Do:

  1. Ask your kid what she thinks goes into making a bird’s nest. Write the items down on a piece of paper. Encourage her to think outside the box. If she suggests gum wrappers, for example, go with it.
  2. Take her outside, either in the backyard or a neighborhood park, and start scavenging for the items that she mentioned. Encourage her to think about what in nature is pliable, what it is sturdy, and what a bird has access to out in the wild.
  3. Bring the items inside and place them on a newspaper (or, weather permitting, set up outdoors). Have your child try to manipulate the grass and twigs and other items into a bird's nest shape. Tell her not to worry if doesn’t look like a nest. The idea is to get her thinking about what kinds of things would make a nest hold its shape.
  4. Encourage her to weave items together, like the pine needles and grass. See if she can just use her two fingers, mimicking a bird’s beak, to get items to stick together.
  5. To take this activity a step further, check out some books at your local library about birds native to your area. See what kinds of things they use to build a nest and how they put them together. Talk about why they build them high up in a tree and whether that is a key element to keeping the nest together.
  6. Have your child display her nest outside in a tree. You never know, you might make a family of birds very happy to visit!

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