I can hardly believe that I’m actually looking into preschool homeschooling again. Our youngest child is three and he is our most active child yet. I am looking forward to lots of fun with this guy.
I’m one of those homeschool moms that likes to make a big plan and then pick and choose what I do as the days go. I like to have options. And sometimes I completely ignore my plans and do my own thing. Even though my plan is also my own thing. I’m complicated like that.
Right now, I am planning on using a theme or unit study approach with Oliver. And I will be sharing these here on the blog. They will consist of books, crafts, activities, coloring pages, simple worksheets, and anything else that happens to fit with the theme.
Please Note: I am not putting these together and expecting us to complete every single activity, every single time. So please don’t think I’m expecting anyone else to do so either. And with that, let’s dive on into our bird unit study for preschool!
(For more bird unit study resources, check the bottom of this post…I like birds.)
Bird Unit Study for Preschool
For our homeschool, every unit study starts with a book list. Some lists are longer than other, but it is the foundation. For preschool, I use both fiction and non-fiction picture books. I include some higher level reading books, we use these as read alouds or just to include the older siblings. These are marked so you know.
Books for a Bird Unit Study for Preschool
I’ve broken these up a bit to make the list a bit more organized.
Books About Birds – Living Book Style
These books are picture books that feature birds but in an engaging story about various aspects of bird life versus a list of facts or textbook style text.
- Have You Heard the Nesting Bird? by Rita Gray, illustrated by Kenard Pak – This book has a lovely rhythm to it. The illustrations have a realistic nature-like look to them. There is a little interview with the nesting bird at the end of the story that has some fun facts about nesting birds.
- Birds by Kevin Henkes, illustrated by Laura Dronzek – Bright and colorful, this book covers a variety of different looks birds can have.
- Don’t be Afraid Little Pip by Karma Wilson, illustrated by Jane Chapman – Pip is disappointed that she can’t fly and tries to learn how from a few birds who can fly. Ultimately she learns to appreciate that she is a penguin and penguins aren’t meant to fly, they are meant to swim!
- Two Blue Jays by Anne Rockwell, illustrated by Megan Halsey – A classroom follows a pair of blue jays from the nest building stage to when their baby birds leave the nest and are able to fly without even one lesson. The illustrations in this book appear to be paper cutouts, they are rather neat looking.
- Little Bird Takes a Bath by Marisabina Russo – Follow along with the little bird as he goes about his day trying to get a proper bath in the city.
- An Egg is Quiet by Dianna Hutts Aston, illustrated by Sylvia Long – Not all the eggs in this book are bird eggs, but a lot are and the book is too gorgeous to leave out.
- A Nest is Noisy by Dianna Hutts Aston, illustrated by Sylvia Long – Like the egg book, not all bird nests, but still a lovely book to include.
Picture Books With Birds
These picture books feature birds but are more storytelling fun in nature.
- Otto the Owl Who Loved Poetry by Vern Kousky – I love that this book introduces poetry to preschoolers in a fun way. There are excerpts from “real” poets like T.S. Eliot and Emily Dickinson and then Otto creates some of his own.
- The Little Bird Who Lost His Song by Jedda Robaard – A little bird goes on a short journey to find his song in this board book. There are a couple flaps in this book which make it more interactive for little ones.
- Home Tweet Home by Courtney Dicmas – This is a fun, colorful book about two bird siblings who try to find the perfect home for their large family, only to realize they already have it.
- Duck’s Vacation by Gilad Soffer – This is a silly, bird version of the classic There’s a Monster at the End of This Book.
- Duck & Goose Go to the Beach by Tad Hills – Duck and Goose are good friends and always a fun read. There are multiple books featuring them. This one has them traveling to the beach. I can oftentimes relate to Goose in this book.
- Peck, Peck, Peck by Lucy Cousins – A young woodpeckers learns how to peck, and proceeds to peck a hole in just about everything. A slightly silly, fun read.
- I’m Not Reading by Jonathon Allen – Baby Owl is trying to read a book to his stuffed Owly when a horde of baby chicks invades. It’s a cute horde.
These two picture books tell a story, but they have a sad element in them that you may want to pre-read so you can decide if your child will be ok with them.
- Bluebird by Bob Staake – This is a wordless book about a lonely boy who befriends a sweet blue bird. The story has a tragic element when the bluebird is struck and killed by a bully with a stick. The book ends with several birds flying the sad boy and his bluebird up in the sky, where the bluebird flies and fades off into the clouds. The geometric illustrations are unique and the reason this book is still on this list.
- Hungry Hen by Richard Waring, illustrated by Caroline Jayne Church – This book is similar to a fairy tale. The fox watches the hungry hen grow, always waiting just one more day because she will be bigger the next day. The fox grows weaker each day until one day he pounces…and the hen eats him. Some kids will find this role reversal funny, some very much not. It reminds me of Aesop’s fables, so I included it on the list.
Bird Picture Books for Older Kids
These books will make a good read aloud or as a way to include an older sibling in on the study:
- Seabird by Holling Clancy Holling – This is a classic living book that chronicles the journey of a carved ivory gull through every “age of American adventure.”
- Backyard Birds of Summer by Carol Lerner – The detailed, colored pencil illustrations of this book are lovely. The book covers feeder birds and birds using houses and includes a chapter on attracting birds to your own yard. There is also a section for more information and further reading.
- Backyard Birds of Winter by Carol Lerner – I did not actually have this one on hand, but it is recommended on the back of the birds of summer book by the same author. I am assuming it is similar and wanted to include it so you would know it is available (I didn’t).
Crafts & Activities for a Bird Unit Study for Preschool
I searched for crafts and activities that would be suitable for 3-4-year-olds, but most of these can be done by just about any age child.
- DIY Bird’s Nest – A super cute craft that even the youngest of kids can put together. This post also has three different bird books that you might want to add to your list, too.
- Birds and Nests Bin – An easy to set up sensory bin.
- Simple Blue Bird Craft – Even the crafting-challenged should be able to pull this one off. I’m a fan. It’s cute too!
- Cookie Cutter Bird Feeders – These are super cute and would make great homemade gifts, too.
- Footprint Bird – These are super cute and easy. Noticing a theme here?
- Four Calling Birds Craft – Bird ornaments that could also make a nice gift and look fun to make.
- Adorable Bird Craft – This paper plate craft requires few supplies.
- Cranberry and Popcorn Garland for the Birds – This one may not be suitable for younger preschoolers, but I think it is a great idea for those who possess the fine motor skills. Maybe a good project to do with Mom?
- Citrus Cup Bird Feeders – Super cute, super easy. Just my crafting style.
- Bird-Themed Sensory Bin – Another option for a sensory bin.
- Easy Cup Owl Craft – These are adorable and would go well with the Otto the Owl book from above!
- Paper Plate Sea Gull Craft – Would go great with a book with a beach theme, too!
- Are You My Mother? Lapbook – Another fun bird book that you can use, this lapbook would be more suited for older preschoolers and kindergarteners.
- Autumn Leaf Marionette Birds – A bit more involved of a craft that involves paint, but don’t let that discourage you, it is super cute and preschoolers will love it!
- Snowy Owl Pine Cone Craft – Adorable! Another good craft for Otto the Owl.
- Paper Plate Puffin – A cute craft if you read a book featuring puffins. If you know of one, let me know in the comments so I can check it out.
- Stained Glass Style Owl Sun Catcher – This requires a special template but is adorable.
- Pelican Paper Plate Craft – Another fun one for a beach themed book.
- Egg Carton Bird Masks – Oh my goodness, these are cute and would be great for encouraging pretend play!
- Easy Goose Craft – This is a very easy craft that requires just two supplies!
If you would like a unit study for older children to go along with this one for the preschoolers, check out the Bird Unit Study over at Every Star is Different! Several of her activities can be used with preschoolers, too. I actually downloaded her science printable pack to use with my kids. I’ll laminate them and we will be able to use them for a long time!
So that is the bird unit study for preschool. In putting this together, I realized a few things. First, I love birds and think they are a lot of fun. Second, I have already written a couple of posts on bird unit studies and even created a couple printables. Third, there will likely be another bird booklist in the future because I found even more adorable bird books to check out at our library. You’re welcome.
Other bird unit study resources on the blog:
- B is for Bird – Alphabet Activities for All Ages
- B is for Bird – Printable Birdie Valentines
- Free How to Draw Tutorials (bird tutorials are included)