Bird Conservancy’s reverse field trip programs can be a follow-up program or pre-trip program for schools attending field trips, or a stand-alone program for schools that do not attend a field trip. Reverse field trip programs take place at your school! Our goal is to get your students outside on your school grounds for these programs, however these can also be done inside a classroom. Reverse field trips are designed to increase students’ understanding of science, math, geography, art and language arts by using birds as the context for learning.
Reverse field trip programs are available September through April. Sessions run 45 minutes to 1 hour and cost $6/student. Sessions are limited to 35 students, but multiple sessions can be scheduled for the same day. A teacher or chaperone is required to be present during programs. Partial and full need-based scholarships may be available upon request. More information about each of the in-class programs can be found below.
Demo Bird Banding
Students become the bird banders in this hands-on activity. Students take turns moving through the bird banding process by extracting, measuring, identifying and banding model birds. These model birds have been created to match to proportions and field marks of real bird species so that students have the opportunity to work through the process of identifying their birds. This program is a great indoor alternative to the live banding demonstration.
Recommended grade levels: 3-9
Topics addressed: STEM careers, migration, bird banding, scientific process
Schoolyard Nature Exploration
No matter whether your school is in an urban, suburban or rural setting nature can be found everywhere! Students will see their schoolyard from a whole new perspective by observing, exploring, and asking questions. From using scientific tools to nature journaling, students will have a chance to get out, get curious, and get connected to the world around them.
Recommended grade levels: K – 12
Topics addressed: inquiry, observation, reflection, ecosystems
Students explore the unique features and adaptations of birds through observation and art. Students create a habitat drawing and make a model clay bird, and then have the opportunity to report out to their peers about where their bird lives, what it eats, and what adaptations help it survive in its habitat. Creativity is encouraged!
Recommended grade levels: 1-6
Topics addressed: adaptations, habitat, art, birds, niche
Feathers and Flight
Discover the wonders of feathers! Students will explore the structure and function of feathers while learning how birds use this unique adaptation. Utilizing critical thinking, reasoning, and creativity students will then design their own wing that is best suited to their chosen habitat.
Recommended grade levels: K – 3
Topics addressed: adaptation, habitat, observation, critical thinking, creativity
Students will learn basic bird identification skills and how to apply them. We will go over proper use of binoculars and field guides. Students will go “birding” around the room using field guides to identify birds found in Colorado. All while learning about the importance of birds and seven ways we can help them!
Recommended grade levels: 3-6
Topics addressed: adaptations, identification, community science
Not a Still Life
Join Bird Conservancy of the Rockies Environmental Educators as they show you that nature is not just a still life! Students will learn about bird adaptations and identifiable features through the lens of scientific illustration. They will be introduced to the concept of art as a tool for education as they create their very own piece of art. No prior art skills are needed!
Recommended grade levels: 5-12
Topics addressed: adaptations and anatomy, scientific illustration, species identification, art and education
Students’ understanding of migratory patterns and geography will be enhanced while they discover the factors that drive bird migration. Students will use bird banding data to map the migratory routes of several bird species and analyze and graph the migratory data of bird species banded at the Bird Conservancy Banding Station.
Recommended grade levels: 3-9
Topics addressed: mapping, geography, teamwork, migration, habitat needs, graphing, data analysis
Water Conservation Community Meeting
Through a simulation, students participate and explore how a community can deplete and damage a local water resource. After learning how that ecosystem was damaged students work in stakeholder groups to brainstorm how they, as members of the community, can restore that ecosystem for future generations. Students will present their groups ideas to the class.
Recommended grade levels: 5-8
Topics addressed: ecosystems, stakeholders, community, conservation, critical thinking, teamwork
Water is a vital resource that all animals, including humans depend on. Students will learn about the hydrologic cycle and the different states of matter water is found in on earth. Students will then collaborate to see how humans can dirty the water in a community’s watershed. After, they will discuss steps they can take to mitigate this issue and help protect birds and their habitats.
Recommended grade levels: 3 – 5
Topics addressed: water, conservation, community, habitats
Half-Day Bird Festival
Middle or high school students become role models for elementary school students in this program. Older students will be trained on leading bird festival activities and then lead the half-day festival for the younger students. Program fee is dependent on the number of participants.
100 participants or less: $3/student
100-199 participants: $2/student
200 or more participants: $1/student
Recommended grade levels: K-6 for the festival activities; 5-12 for the activity leaders
Topics addressed: STEM careers, bird banding, scientific process, migration, adaptations