Birds, Binoculars & Breakfast Trail Mix

by Jul 18th, 2010 // Breakfast, Recipes, Tool Tips

Birds, Binoculars & Breakfast Trail Mix

This morning I surprised my kid with an indoor bird watching expedition complete with make-your-own binoculars and breakfast trail mix. He’s been talking about it all day long.

The bird watching expedition starts with our special breakfast trail mix which we take along while we search for birds throughout the house using our home made binoculars.

My kid uses the Bird Watching Guide I created to find each of the birds hidden throughout the house. Once he’s identified and found a bird, he circles it on the guide and heads off to look for the next. Here’s how to set up a bird watching expedition in your own home…

1.) Bird Watching Trail Mix
Bird watching starts with a yummy breakfast trail mix that’s perfect for taking along on the expedition but is also great for taking on a trip. (We like to take it on the plane!)

Trail Mix Recipe
2 handfuls unsalted cashews
2 handfuls Cheerios
2 handfuls Barbara’s Shredded Oats
2 handfuls dried cranberries
2 handfuls raisins

Put all ingredients in a bag and shake. You can substitute any cereal you have in the house for the 2 listed above. Serves 2 generously. We like to pack it in something like this Chinese Take Out Food Boxes: 32 oz. (1 Quart) – Red

2) Bird Watching Prep
While your kid is still sleeping you’ll need to prep for the expedition by making the trial mix (above) and printing the Bird Cutouts directly from the box below.
Bird Cutouts

Cut each of the birds out. They don’t need to be perfect.

Roll a piece of tape to place on the back of each of the bird cut outs.

Hang the birds throughout your home. Make some hard to find and others easy.

3) Bird Watching Guide
Next you’ll want to print out the bird watching guide and locate a pen or marker for your kid to use while looking for birds. Print directly from the box below.

Bird Watching Guide

5) Binocular Prep
Here’s a list of what you’ll need to put together the binoculars.
– 2 toilet paper tubes or 1 paper towel tube cut in 1/2
– 1 piece of construction paper
– scissors
– hole punch
– stickers
– tape
– ribbon or string

6) Making the Binoculars
Set out all the binocular materials and guide your kid through the following steps.

Fold the construction paper in half lengthwise.

Cut the paper along the fold.

Now fold that piece in half.

And cut it at the fold to form two equal sized pieces.

Wrap the pieces around your toilet paper rolls and affix with tape.

Fold the extra construction paper in towards the center of the roll.

Repeat all the above steps on the second roll and then tape the two rolls together at the top and bottom of the rolls.

Decorate the tubes with stickers.

Use your hole punch to punch a hole in either side of the tubes.

Tie a piece of ribbon or string to either side of the binoculars. Length of ribbon depends on the size of your kid. Since it involves string, you should not leave your kid unattended with these binoculars around his/her neck.

Your binoculars are now finished!

7) Time to Bird Watch!
Let your kid put the binoculars on, give him the bird guide and pack a back with trail mix for him to take on his expedition.

Remind him to circle each of the birds that he finds on his Bird Watching Guide.

When you are finished bird watching, remove the birds from the wall. Remove the tape from the back of the birds and store them in a drawer. This game can be played over and over. You can hang the birds in different places each time and make them increasingly more difficult to be found. Hope you have as much fun as we did!


11 Comments on “Birds, Binoculars & Breakfast Trail Mix”

  1. 1.) Jacinda
    July 19th, 2010

    So fun! I was just thinking this weekend that Clare is probably ready for some "Game-like" activities. This would be perfect.

  2. 2.) Aubrey
    July 19th, 2010

    This is a fabulous idea. Great adventure for when there are rainy days too and you can't go outside. So creative.

  3. 3.) Holly Rose
    July 19th, 2010

    You are such a good mummy Rebecca, what a fun, educational and creative idea 🙂

  4. 4.) ovenhaven
    July 20th, 2010

    What a fun idea for the kids! Love that you've packed them a trail mix 🙂

  5. 5.) Tara
    July 20th, 2010

    I cannot wait to do this! It's been too hot to go outside. Thanks for this great idea and your inspiring blog.

  6. 6.) LJP
    July 20th, 2010

    Did he find a Dove?!?

  7. 7.) Rebecca & Gus
    July 20th, 2010

    yes. in its natural habitat – a crib!

  8. […] Cooking With My Kid posted a brilliant Bird Watching post: to die for … even a printable guide. It is simply gorgeous. […]

  9. 9.) Katie
    August 3rd, 2010

    What a great activity! Thanks for providing the printables! We're working on a post on printables for learning and have included this in it. We used your 3rd picture, credited you, and provided a link back to this post. If you prefer we remove it, just let us know and we'll do so right away.

  10. 10.) Sonya
    August 9th, 2010

    Julian (almost 3) absolutely loved doing this. Thanks so much for the great idea!

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