Thursday, 5 January 2012

Pine Cone Bird Feeders

I can't believe how quickly today has gone!  We had a visit from Naomi and Alex this morning who came to play for a few hours.  The weather has continued to be wet and windy with very strong winds and it is also very cold, so we haven't managed to go out today.  I planned some more activities to follow on  from our topic on National Bird Day; this one being some pine cone bird feeders.

To make the bird feeders you will need:

  • Some pine cones
  • Gardeners twine
  • Vegetable suet
  • 5-10 tablespoons warm water
  • Peanut butter (optional)
  • Bird seed
  • A mixing bowl
  • A tablespoon
  • A small tray or dish
  • You will also need a little helper!

First take the gardeners twine and tie a loop around the wider stem-end of the pine cones.

 Mix the packet of vegetable suet with the water, add a tablespoon at a time until it turns thick and sticky.  You can also add 1-2 tablespoons of peanut butter here.

Using the tablespoon, pack the suet mixture into the pine cone applying pressure so that it sticks.

Then roll it around in the dish full of bird seed until it is all covered.  You can firm it around with your hands to ensure it i all covered and won't fall off.  Little people might not like this part as your hands tend to get greasy.

When they are all firmed, leave on a plate to set.

And there you go!  Tasty birdie treats! Tweet tweet!

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

National Bird Day

Our first day back after the New Year was a very wet and blustery day with winds of up to 70mph!

National Bird Day takes place on 5th January this year and I had planned an outing to the lakes to feed the ducks and seagulls to coincide with the festival. I had to postpone it though because of the weather as it wasn't safe to go out, so we did some indoor craft activites instead.

Today was one of the days I have my variation, so I had 4 children aged 2 and under, a 6 year old and my son, Oliver and his friend who are 11 and 12!  It was very hectic to say the least! We did some bird colouring sheets, looked at owls and the letter O, and we made some birds using half a paper plate, some PVA glue, a googly eye and some coloured feathers. We then finished them off by adding some yellow pipe cleaners for the legs.  I also tried out tomorrow's activity with Amelia; a hand and footprint owl.  I am going to do these with the other children tomorrow when I don't have so many here!  I have got to get some sticky stars to put in the night sky to finsh it off.

We will be doing lots of other bird-based activities such as singing songs (2 little dickie birds, sing a song a sixpence, etc) and reading stories about birds; Silly Suzy Goose, The Ugly Duckling, The Owl who was afraid of the dark, etc. and making bird feeders from pine cones and peanut butter!

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