Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Outdoor Nature Hour # 6

We continued with our focus on birds in our Outdoor Nature Hour this week.  We decided to examine the feathers of our mommy hen and her babies.  I pulled out the Handbook of Nature Study and read the sections on feathers so I would be able to talk with the little ones and answer any questions.

First of all, we picked up the mommy hen and looked at her feathers.  We noted how they were layered on top of one another and decided this must be to keep the hen dry.  We looked at the difference between back and breast feathers. 

We also compared the baby chicks feathers to the hens.  We noticed that the baby chicks are covered with down and the first true feathers to develop  were the wing feathers.  Down is different from feathers.  It lacks the quill and web.

After examining the birds we took a walk around the yard to collect some feathers to examine and tape in our nature notebooks.  We found several feathers with beautiful patterns.  Our chickens are part game and they usually have very colorful markings. 

We placed the feathers in out notebooks and the boys drew a diagram of a feather and labeled the web, fluff and web.

The smallest feathers had beautiful markings on the web


The Watts Family said...

Looks like a wonderful study on feathers. We do alot of birds in our nature study I think the study of feathers is a great idea. They are also so challenging to draw it gives the children wonderful art experience. I enjoyed your post ~Blessings Love Heather

Amy in Peru said...

This is SO awesome. I love your pictures too! Way to go, mom!
We just used the HNS to study ants, since we have a big new anthill forming outside our door!

amy in peru