Bronxville News

Students Learn About Bird Beaks Through Hands-on Activities
Bronxville, NY

Kindergarten students – who have been learning about the unique features and behaviors of birds – took on the roles of scientists and conducted an exploration to determine the relationship between the shape of different bird beaks and the food each bird eats.

Science teacher Stephanie Kennedy challenged the students to a hands-on learning experience to help them make a strong connection to their studies. 

“They used straws to represent long, pointy beaks that are useful in picking up seeds and small insects between rocks,” Kennedy said. “They also used small paper cups to represent wide, flat beaks that are good at scooping up food.” 

Having scattered uncooked pasta on their desks, the students were tasked with navigating around colorful beads that represented rocks to pick up as many pieces of pasta as they could with their straws and paper cups. Then, they placed the pasta into a clear plastic cup, which represented a bird’s stomach, and reflected on the experience. 

“The children had a blast, and more importantly, learned how certain adaptations help animals survive in their natural habitat,” Kennedy said. 

Throughout the science unit, the students also examined feathers and nests and learned about different sounds that birds make. To complement their studies, all classes recently participated in an on-site avian exploration at the Greenburgh Nature Center.