Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Birds in Our Yard

We've been casually "studying" the birds in our back yard. I decided to make a simple activity to go along with them. Our fridge was the perfect spot! The title says, "Birds in Our Yard." I included a title to begin teaching Q simple graphing skills--the first of which is that the title tells what the graph will be about. Then I used metal clips and put the name of each bird on a clip (typed them, printed them, mounted them on scrapbook paper, laminated them). I put 4 round magnets on the fridge and the metal clips stick to the magnets. Then I found pictures of our birds (most came from a set of greeting cards I already had, but a few I printed off the internet.) There are red-headed woodpeckers, bluejays, mockingbirds, and cardinals. There are a couple of each type of bird. Q can take them all off, sort them by type and clip them back up again! She just needs a little of my help to read the names of the birds!
This encourages sorting, classification, visual discrimination, nature skills, prereading skills, and graphing skills.
Daddy's also been reading her a little tiny bird book before bed that names several more birds that we don't have in our yard....but I got a hummer feeder for mother's day, so we may be adding hummers to our fridge soon!

The same thing could be done with butterflies, insects, mammals, etc.
For infants, you could just provide a basket of the laminated cards in a more general fashion--squirrel, bird, butterfly, spider, worm, etc., naming living things you have in your yard.
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