Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Adaptations: Bird Beaks - Version 1

Over the years, I have encountered several different variations of this activities.  I think they all have merits, so look for me to share a few other versions in coming weeks.

This first version is the simplest, and the most appropriate for younger students.

Create a bucket of "bird food".  Into this bucket, dump all kinds of things - try to include a wide variety of shapes sizes and textures.  Some things you might want to include:
  • Sand
  • Oats
  • Rice
  • Marshmallows
  • Gummy Worms
  • Cereal
  • Pasta
  • Coconut
  • Small candies

Then provide each student with a beak tool.  Look around your house for ideas:
  • Tongs
  • Chopsticks
  • Eye droppers
  • Forks
  • Pliers
  • Tweezers
  • Toothpicks
  • Clothespins
Let the students go at the bucket of food with their respective beaks.  They should try to gather as much food as they can. 
After a set amount of time has passed, spend some time looking around to see which beaks were able to pick up which foods. 

Ask your students why the eye dropper beak wasn't able to pick up the oatmeal, and why the tongs weren't able to pick up the sand.

There are several nice worksheets out there to use as a follow-up to this activity.  You can find two here and here


  1. Is it still possible to get the worksheets that go with this activity? I was unable to get them through the above link. This experiment sounds cut, and I'd like to try it!

  2. I've used a similar lesson plan trying to tweak it each time. Unfortunately students view the activity as a competition, & are willing to "cheat" to "win" the "game".

    1. But competition is part of survival,maybe you can find a way to incorporate that into your game.

  3. This is a great hands on activity for adaptation. I will surely try it. Thank you.

  4. I couldn't get the follow up worksheets

  5. does anyone have the worksheets? the link didn't work...