Seedlings at Schools: building bird boxes for feathered friends
Not sure whether to call this blog winter or spring because we seem to be going backwards and forwards between the two seasons! A cold wind blowing in from Russia and then a warm westerly bringing a thaw and a promise of croaking frogs and nesting birds.
With the birds in mind, I worked with the children from Ben Rhydding Primary School, near Ilkley, this week and we studied the behaviour of birds and their nesting habits. We made three different types of nest boxes for their new science/environmental area. Two types of box had different sizes of circular entrance hole, whilst the other one had an open front for Robins or Flycatchers.
The Year 4 children worked really well, using both hand and power tools, and produced boxes that were well built and ready for tenants. We discussed how bird structure and behaviour influences which boxes the birds use and also where the boxes should be sited in order to have the best chance of getting occupants. The birds should be nesting fairly soon, although the winter weather might have put them off for a while.
Recently two great scientists passed away. Stephen Hawking and Trevor Baylis epitomise how wide the subject of science is; one studied the universe and the meaning of time whilst the other solved a very practical problem about communication in poor remote areas with his invention of the clockwork radio. Both were great men in their own right and have contributed a vast amount to science not just in this country but the whole world. I am sure that among the pupils who I have worked with on the Seedlings at Schools project there will be many great scientists in future years.
The Seedlings at Schools project is part of Bettys ongoing Trees for Life work. Ian Johnson, Education Officer at Groundwork, has been busy teaching children about the importance of trees through hands-on woodland themed activities.