Homeschool Bird Unit Study

In search of ideas for a bird unit study in your homeschool? Looking for fun and inviting ornithology lesson plans

Birds are truly amazing creatures. They’re covered in feathers and quite intelligent. Most can fly, some can swim, and a few can even live well past their 50s. With recent research suggesting nearly 20,000 species worldwide, it’s hard not to want to dive deeper into exploring the many fascinating facts about birds.

In this post, I share all of the activities and resources we used for our bird unit study. This unit is catered towards kindergarten and lower elementary, but you’ll find many of the books and activities will work nicely for younger or older students as well. 

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Bird Unit Study

Books are often the heart of our unit studies, and listed below are 9 of our top picks for learning all about birds.

  1. The Little Book of Backyard Bird SongsWith the help of this book, your kids will be able to identify common birds in your backyard by listening to their songs. This enchanting, interactive book is a sure-favorite in our home.
  2. Spit Nests, Puke Power, and Other Brilliant Bird Adaptations: This book is filled with interesting bird adaptations used for habitat building, courtship, fighting off predators, and more. You’ll find many of the birds featured in this picture book are also included in this top-rated Bird Bingo game.
  3. The Burgess Bird Book for Children: A Charlotte Mason-Inspired early chapter book. Follow along as Peter Rabbit observes and gathers information about various species of birds on the old orchard with the help of his good friend, Jenny Wren. This one makes such a lovely read-aloud.
  4. The Big Book of BirdsColorful, lively, and packed with interesting facts about birds. Great for both younger and older students.
  5. The Big Sticker Book of BirdsAn interactive book that teaches about birds around the world. Filled with fun activities that include stickers, coloring, pre-writing skills, counting, and more.
  6. United Tweets of America: Add in a little bit of geography by introducing the 50 state birds. Gives a lot of quick facts on the birds and each state and even adds a bit of humor (that’s aimed more for the parents). 
  7. A Nest Is Noisy: Not specific to birds, but the entire series that this book belongs to is just so captivating and educational. A poetic read that teaches about the many ways animals build their homes and protect their young.
  8. An Egg Is Quiet: Another lovely and informative pick that covers more than just birds. Learn about the various shapes and sizes that eggs come in, how young develop inside of an egg, and what an egg is comprised of. 
  9. Robins! How They Grow UpA wonderfully illustrated picture book that covers the life cycle of a robin. Filled with humor and interesting facts, while also presenting real-life events that often happen in nature.

Bird Field Guides

Having a good field guide is key when doing a bird nature study. Here’s the three we utilized for this unit: 

  1. Family Fandex Bird Field GuideA great guide for children to bring along on nature walks. This fandex guide features 50 North American birds, including information about their appearance, diet, habitat, range, conservation status, and more.
  2. Birds of Iowa Field GuideIt’s always nice to have a field guide that’s specific to your local area. Stan Tekiela’s guides are filled with beautiful photographs and interesting facts to help simplify bird identification.
  3. Birds, Nests, and Eggs: This take-along guide helps children identify 15 common birds, along with their nests and eggs. It also includes a few different bird watching projects to do with your kids. 

Bird Themed Crafts

We kept the art projects super simple this time around with these four easy crafts: 

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  • North American Songbird Coloring Pages: This FREE printable pack comes with five coloring sheets, featuring some of the most common songbirds of North America. Each page includes both the common and scientific name for the bird.
  • Dover Little Birds Stained Glass Coloring Book: Use crayons, felt-tips pens, or paint to color in this transparent paper. Tape it to the window and watch the sun shine through! 
  • Paint Wooden Birdhouses: I found these little wooden bird houses for the kids to paint at our local Dollar Tree. You can find several bird house kits on Amazon as well. 
  • DIY Binoculars: Another super simple craft. Grab some toilet paper tubes and have your littles go to town painting them. Staple them together at each end, then use a single hole punch to create a hole on the outsides at one of the ends. Grab some yarn or string and tie it so the kids can wear them around their neck.

Bird Activities and Games

  • Match a Pair of Birds: A classic memory game, where you have to find the matching male and female pairs of birds. Beautifully illustrated and covers birds around the world. Comes with a little booklet that gives a little bit of information on each bird and how to distinguish the male from female (if possible). 
  • Bird Bingo: Such a fun way to introduce the names of several birds that can be found around the globe. This one is also beautifully illustrated, sturdy, and comes with an informational booklet.
  • Hoot Owl Hoot: A cooperative game where you have to work together to get all the owlets back to their nest before the sun comes up. Even preschoolers can enjoy this one.
  • Audubon Bird Call: You can use this tool to discuss why and how animals communicate for courtship, alerting the presence of a predator, claiming territory, and more.  When twisted, it makes a variety of sounds similar to several wild birds. 
  • Bird Puzzles: Puzzles are great for logic, as well as educating on several different topics. We had a “Birds of North America” and a “North American Owls” puzzle that we purchased over at Nature Watch for this unit, but there are several other bird puzzles out there as well.

Field Trip Ideas

Of course, just going out in your backyard or walking around your neighborhood will be such a wonderful way to discover and appreciate the beauty of birds, but you can also look for these field trip ideas in your local area: 

  • Audubons
  • State and/or national parks
  • Zoo and/or aquarium (most have aviaries)
  • Wildlife rehabilitation center
  • Nature center 
  • Bird/wildlife sanctuary

Free Bird Unit Study Ideas

Happy Birding!

I hope this post gave you tons of great ideas for your own bird unit study
Now, collect the kids and get out and appreciate the beauty of birds!

What About You?

What are some of your favorite ideas for a bird unit study? Share your most-beloved bird books, crafts, activities, and more in the comments below and be sure to share this post with other bird-loving families. 

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