Celebrate the beauty of individuality! Use special collage materials from our R75419 Sensory Collage Kit and the templates below to make beautiful and special birds. Decorate a wall of your classroom with the tree from our R49132 Four Seasons Poet Tree kit and then place the birds all around the tree to fill it up! Every child in your class brings a unique aspect to your classroom experience. Like birds, every student is different but in their own special way, essentially the same. Let students use as many collage materials as they can get their hands on to make each bird extra special!
Duration: 15-30 minutes (plus drying time). This activity may be spread out over several days to allow glue to dry, decorate the tree, etc.
Age Range: 4-8
You will need:
• Sheets of paper (8.5 x 11″)
• Card paper (8.5 x 11″)
Download and print out the bird templates provided below (NOTE: You will need a PDF viewer to access the templates). The format of the pdf fits on 8.5 x 11″ standard paper. The first bird template is a simpler template to use than the second one. The first bird template is easiest for young children to cut out. The second bird template is a bit more challenging to cut out, so you will need to reserve that template for children who are more comfortable with using scissors.
NOTE: This activity requires two stages of scissor-cutting. The first will exercise students’ use of scissors to cut sheets of regular paper. The second step will consist of cutting out the templates once more from card paper.
Distribute the templates to your students and provide them with scissors to cut out the birds. Once they are finished cutting the templates, give the students card paper to trace the template design onto. This exercise helps to reinforce tracing and cutting skills, which builds fine motor function and gives children more control over their art. NOTE: Our goal is to provide children with process art (through collage activity) which ends up in result-based artwork (individually decorated birds). Merging the two provides the best experience for both student and teacher and fulfills the requirements of the curriculum.
Place the card paper bird onto a paint tray (R7512 Fingerpaint “No Mess” Tray). This will ensure that all messes resulting from the collage activity stay in one convenient location! Fill several R5519 Classroom Bowls with the sensory collage material from the R75419 Sensory Collage Kit and some glue in one separate bowl. You can place handfuls of the collage material onto students’ paint trays and ask them to keep craft messes as contained as possible!
Give the students R5725 Goo Spreaders to spread glue across the card paper bird. Students can spread the glue in sections across the card paper bird to keep the glue from drying too quickly. Drop a handful of collage material onto one section of the bird (such as the tail, which I’ve done in the photo above).
Here’s a more complete image of the bird! I’ve added some of the Plox-based collage material to the bottom part of the bird. As sections of the bird are drying, ask students to feel across the collage material and describe it to you. Is it fuzzy or fluffy? How about rumply or bumpy? These birds have special kinds of feathers, don’t they?
Here’s my fluffy bird! I’ve added a bit of pink collage material to its beak area to distinguish that part from the rest of the bird. You can also use a black marker to fill in the part where the bird’s eye should be. Once the bird is dry, turn it over to write the student’s name at the back.
Open up the package of the R49132 Four Seasons Poet Tree and unfold the Poet Tree provided. Use painter’s tape or wads of sticky tack to hold the tree up on a wall of your classroom.
Use tape or a large wad of sticky wad to paste the birds around the tree. A great way to unify the classroom experience. Do this activity before Parent-Teacher night to allow parents and students to pluck off each bird from the tree. This allows you to use the leaves provided in the R49132 Four Seasons Poet Tree pack for the poetry activity! Use the leaves throughout the year or make a second set of birds to fill in the tree.
Did your classroom make a version of this activity? Send us photos of your classroom birds to us! Contact us through the contact form. We’d love to hear from you!