How to Get Kids Bird Watching
Bird Watching Academy & Camp helps “Get Kids Bird Watching”! Our monthly subscriptions are fun for the whole family.
To Get Started
Order a Monthly Subscription Package. We have several to choose from.
The most popular ways people are ordering subscriptions are:
- One subscription for each kid with either the 1 or 3 bird patch option. This way each kid can count and track the number of birds they see. (our recommendation)
- Families that want to share a map with up to 3 kids order the subscription with 3 bird patches. (each of the 3 kids can get a bird patch)
- Kids or families without binoculars order the starter subscription pack that include kids binoculars or kids and adult binoculars.
How to Use the Bird Watching Map
There are 20 birds placed on each map. Each time a kid sees a bird they can place a bird sticker on the map. This feature is to help kids count birds. Counting birds is a big part of bird watching. Counting birds is also a good starting point for the age group 5 to 10.
The birds on the map are not the specific birds you are trying to see and identify while bird watching. Some of the birds on the map may not be native to the area you live in or are bird watching in. However, introducing kids to all kinds of birds is important.
The maps are not geographically based but the birds on the maps should be common to most areas. The maps are theme based like mountain ranges, forests, beaches, prairies, jungles, savannas, and other fun environments for kids to think about while bird watching.
Types of Birds on the Bird Watching Map
The different birds on the map are to help the kids get introduced to new birds. Each month the map, stickers, and patches have new birds. After 12 months, your kids will be introduced to 144 different birds. We have designed the cartoon birds with features of real birds. This helps younger and older kids become familiar with the characteristics of different birds. After time kids will begin to be able to identify the cartoon birds in real life while bird watching.
Where to Use the Bird Watching Map
The Bird Watching Map can be used at any time. Your kids can spot birds in the backyard, at school, at parks, on family outings, or on bird walks with the family. Kids may see birds when they do not have the map and then add a sticker to the map later.
Another way to use the map is just on bird watching events with the family. The parents, kids, or family can use their best judgement to determine what works best for them. Which ever way you choose to use the map should be fun for the kids and the whole family.
There should be lots of bird watching spots near your home. Some of the top bird watching spots for our Bird Watching Academy kids have been:
- local parks and playgrounds
- rivers or lakes
Kids Bird Watching Skill Level
Kids age 4 to 10 have a wide range of bird watching skills. Some of the younger kids may just like going on walks and seeing birds and some older kids may learn how to start identifying birds by size and color. Some of the younger kids may not be able to use binoculars yet so don’t get frustrated. Some of our 5-year olds constantly look through the binoculars backwards. We just keep encouraging them to use them the right way.
Also younger kids typically just run around having fun while on birds walks. It is normal for kids to get distracted from bird watching, especially at parks and trails where there are lots of other exciting things for them to explore. Don’t expect them to put on a safari hat and start tracking birds across the globe just yet. However, we did have a 5-year old boy spot a Dodo bird?! Just let them have fun and be excited you are spending quality time with them.
Bird Watching as a Family
After a few bird watching trips our Bird Watching Academy kids and families mentioned that it helped them build closer family relationships. Doing something together is bonding for kids and parents and grand parents. Spending time together is one of the best ways to show kids you love them. Sometimes just 1 hour on Saturday or 30 minutes at a park during the week while calling it a “Bird Watching Academy” trip can create fun adventures.
Don’t forget your enthusiasm and excitement for bird watching is contagious. Your kids will follow your example. If you are excited about bird watching then chances are they will be as well. Also, some parents incorporate other activities kids like into bird watching. (Check out our Bird Watching Scavenger Hunt Printout) So get creative and let us know if you come up with something new.
Bird Watching Apps for Adults and Teenagers
There are a handful of apps out there for bird watching. There are 2 apps we like to recommend if you are not currently using anything to identify birds now.
Apps we like to identify birds:
- Merlin Bird ID – great for a quick and easy bird identification.
- Audubon – great for quick and easy bird identification and exploring bird types and locations
Choose a Subscription Package to Get Kids Bird Watching.
We currently have a sticker pack subscription and several map, stickers, and bird patch subscriptions.
The map subscription: Each month you will receive an envelope with a new bird watching map, bird stickers, and some bird iron on patches. Your kids will learn about 12 new birds every month. These maps include a goal to see and count 20 birds in a month. The maps also include fun adventures for kids to look for. Over the course of 1 year, your kids will be introduced to over 144 birds. The bird iron on patches are selected randomly each month. Kids can collect all their favorite birds.