Like everybody across the world, the International Crane Foundation’s staff is adjusting to our new reality. At this time last year, we were visiting classrooms, tabling at community events, and handing out hugs from our mascot Hope. We want to continue to spread our message of crane conservation to families with kids at home. We hope we can give you some fun and educational activities you can do on your own.
Over the next few months, the International Crane Foundation’s Education and Outreach Team is going to recommend activities for you and your loved ones to do from the safety of your home. Some of these activities are picked from our existing online resources, and others are from other organizations that have great, crane-themed activities for kids.
Activity Description: Starfall.com has created a great online reading activity that will introduce you to some of our native Wisconsin birds. In addition to this, the International Crane Foundation has created a fun activity packet full of coloring activities and crafts! These are great activities to do for a quick introduction to birds and cranes.
Time estimate: 2 hours
Topics covered: Reading, math, bird identification, crane behavior, adaptations, wetland and prairie ecology
Materials needed: Internet access, printer, crayons or markers, and scissors
For optional wetland experiment: 1 bread pan, measuring cup, 1 large sponge 4 x 7 x 2 inches, water, 2 tsp. soil, 1 brick
Adult involvement: Yes, for activities and reading/comprehension
Indoor or Outdoor: Indoor
This introduction to birds and cranes will cover topics that will give your kids a better understanding of the natural world. Once these activities have been finished, we hope you and your kids will take these ideas with you when you go outside to make observations, ask questions and have fun.
Start with Bird Riddles and read along. This is a quick and silly warm-up for learning. Some good questions to ask:
Have you seen any of these birds in your neighborhood?
What are some differences between these birds?
What do all animals need to survive?
What is a habitat? This video can help you find answers.
What habitat do cranes live in?
Cranes need wetlands to survive! Their habitat is a wetland. A wetland is what it sounds like – a place that has both water and land. Read more about wetlands on page 14 of our student activity packet.
Just for fun: Have your student draw a crane in its habitat! You can use the above photo to make a drawing, or just use your imagination! Post it to social media and tag the International Crane Foundation. Use the hashtag #cranesneedwetlands too! We might even feature your drawing on our social media pages.
Next, move on to the International Crane Foundation’s activity packets. As a parent or teacher, or both these days, you can view our teacher instructions with background information and answers to the activity sheets. If you do not have a printer, just view the activity packets on your computer or tablet screen and follow along with the pages that don’t require printing. These packets were designed for classrooms getting ready for a field trip to the International Crane Foundation’s headquarters, but you can skip through the information about how to get to our site and start on page 8 of the teacher instructions.
What do you think? Please send your feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org. We would love to see photos of you and your kids learning about cranes and their habitats. We will see you next week for Week 2 of Quarantining with Cranes!
Quarantine with Cranes is made possible by the generosity of the Antonia Foundation.