With the winter months upon us, birds have a difficult time finding food. Below are some different types of bird feeders and treats your students can make so that they feel they are making a difference in helping the wildlife this winter.
Wild Birdseed Cookies
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup of sugar
2/3 cup vegetable shortening (Crisco)
3/4 cup birdseed (use small seeds)
3 egg whites
yarn to hang cookies
Sift all the dry ingredients together and cut in the lard with a blunt knife. Add the eggs. Add the birdseed and kneed until smooth. Allow the dough to chill overnight. Roll out the dough to 1/4 inch thickness and cut into shapes with cookie cutters. Insert a paper clip into the top of the shape to act as a hanger. Brush the cookie with beaten egg whites and press birdseed into the top of the cookie. Bake on an ungreased cookie sheet at 325 degrees F for 10-15 minutes or until the cookies are hard. String yarn through the paper clip to make a hanger and hang outside.
Bagel Bird Feeder
day old bagels
yarn for hanging
Spread shortening over the bagel and put the bagel into a bag of birdseed. Shake and remove. Loop yarn through the bagel to make a hanger and hang outside.
Pine Cone Bird Feeders
2 cups bread crumbs
1/2 cup unsalted nuts
2 - 3 chopped apples
2/3 cup of raisins
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup cornmeal
1/2 pound ground beef
1/2 cup flour
18 oz. jar of peanut butter
1 cup wild birdseed (small seeds)
Mix ingredients together. Press into pine cones. Hang them outside and watch the birds feast!
Peanut, Popcorn, and Cranberry Strings
Using a needle, string unsalted, unshelled roasted peanuts, fresh cranberries, and popped popcorn on cotton string. String them around the trees and watch the birds enjoy! 2
Liter Bottle Feeders
Make a water feeder or seed feeder out of an empty plastic two liter bottle. Cut a hole just above the base and put water or birdseed inside the bottle. Punch a pencil or a wooden dowel through the bottle just under the hole to make a perch. Cut a wire coat hanger and bend both ends to make a hook. Insert the hook into each side of the bottle near the top. You can decorate the bottles using paint pens.
Nest Building Bags
This is not for feeding the birds, but it is still fun to do. Get an empty bag that they use to sell onions in at the grocery store. Fill it with pieces of string, yarn, dryer lint. Hang it outside for the birds to use when building their nests.
Submitted by: Susan Seagraves
Do you have additional ideas or activities that could help teachers? We would love to post them on The Teacher's Corner. Please contact us and let us know about them!