So far in our bird unit we have learned about what different birds look like, what they eat, where they live, and the sounds that they make. Last week we extended our affinity for birds by having the students create their own birds and all the details that go along with them.
The students started by rolling up newspaper into different sizes and taping them together to resemble a head, body, beaks, and even a tail. After the base of the body was ready, the students dipped strips of newspaper into a mixture of water and flour and smoothed them onto their bird. Some students loved the feeling of the ooey gooey mixture between their fingers (that eventually crept up their arms) while others were not as enthused. Some students felt they would best serve the project by becoming the recorder, documenting each step of the project through drawings. The projects were then left to dry over several days.
Since then, the students have started to discuss how they would like the birds to look. The group members decide what colors of paint to use and where, what to call the bird, if it is a male or female, where it might live, and what it eats.
Not only are the students working on their cooperation skills, but they are using their imaginations to create a world in which these birds may live. Plus, who could resist the opportunity to get a little messy and learn at the same time?