Music, Mathematics, Science
Material Type:
Assessment, Lesson, Media Object
  • Lesson Plan
  • Preschool
    Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial
    Media Formats:

    How Birds Move

    How Birds Move


    This is a lesson plan for preschool students about how birds move.  It is intended for a special needs preschool, but could be used in another preschool.  It should take from 15 to 25 minutes and can be broken into sections.


    This lesson is about how birds move.  It is intended for a special needs preschool but would work with another preschool.

    It should take 15-25 minutes and can be broken down into sections.


    Background for Teachers

    In this lesson, only very basic information is needed and the teacher would already know this information.


    Step 1 - Goals and Outcomes

    Students will be able to describe three ways birds can move.

    Students will be able to complete a chart showing which ways a flamingo, penguin and hummingbird move.

    Students who are verbal will explain that birds that swim have webbed feet and penguins can't fly because their wings are too small.


    Step 2 - Planning Instruction

    This lesson is designed to go after a lesson where how birds are classified as birds is taught.

    The day before or the day of this lesson the teacher will have the students look for and listen for birds at recess.

    The teacher will need a clean feather or a picture of a feather.

    The teacher will need to preview the videos.  They can be found by going to emedia, selecting preschool in the educationasl level and search.  Scroll down until it says load more and then load more.  The three videos are Classic Animal Tracks videos.  The ones you will use are the penguin, flamingo, amd hummingbird videos. 

    The chart and pictures of birds need to be copied off, one for whole group and one for each student.  They are attached to this section.


    Step 3 - Instruction

    Activate background knowledge:  The teacher will show the feather and ask what it is and where it came from.  Pass the feather around so the students can look at it and touch it.

    Talk about birds observed at recess and what they were doing.

    Tell the students they will first be watching a video on emperor penguins.  Hold your hand 49 inches from the floor.  Tell them that is how big these penguins are.  Ask if they are bigger or smaller than these penguins.  Tell the students to lookfor how the penguins move and look at their wings and feet.  Start the video.  Stop at 54 seconds to show the feet and the webbing between the toes.  Explain that this webbing helps penguins swim.  Resume video.  Stop at 113 seconds and look at the wings.  Because the penguin has a big body and little wings it doesn't fly.  Resume the video.  Stop at 128 seconds.  Ask what the penguin is doing.  Watch the rest of the video.  When it is over place the penguin pictures on the chart in the correct places and have the students tell why they go there.  If you want to add a music component ask if they liked or didn't like the music.  Some students may be able to tell you why, but most won't have the vocabulary.

    Tell the students they will be watching a video about flamingos.  Hold your hand 59 inches from the floor.  Tell the students that is how tall big flamingos are.  Ask if they are bigger or smaller that the big flamingos.  Hold your hand 31 inches from the floor.  Tell them that is how tall the smaller kinds of flamingos are.  Ask them if they are bigger or smaller that these flamingos.Start the video.  stop at 105 seconds and point out the wings and ask how the bird is flying.  Play the video to 150 seconds.  Show the webbing on the feet and ask what that tells them about this bird.  Play the rest of the video.  Ask the students where the flamingo goes on the chart and why and put it in the correct places.  If you are doing the music component ask them if they liked the music and why.

    Tell the students the last video will be about hummingbirds.  Again they are to look at how the bird is moving and look at the wings and feet.  Hold your fingers about 3-4 inches apart and tell them this is how big most hummingbirds are.  Are they bigger or smaller than the hummingbirds?  Play the video.  Stop at 37 seconds and point out the wings.  Stop the video at 117 seconds and show the feet.  They do not have webbing and hummingbirds don't fly.  Stop at 133 seconds and tell them the nest is only about 2 inches big.  Could they hold it in their hands? Play the rest of the video.  Ask how the hummingbird moves and put the picture in the correct place on the chart.  Tell them that hummingbirds don't walk or hop, they just use their feet to hold on when they land.  If you are doing the music portion ask how well they liked the music and why.

    The students may wish to see the videos again and you can do that if there is time.  Show the chart and ask the students why each bird is in that place on the chart and what they know about the wings and feet that help them know how that bird moves.  If you are doing the music portion ask them which music they liked the best and why.

    During one on one or small group time  the students will complete the chart with the teacher reading the headings and those who are vocal will tell how the wings and feet help the bird move.



    Step 4 - Assessments

    Step 4 Assessments

    In this section, include a description of how you will assess student learning. This plan can include pre-assessments, formative assessment practices, student self-monitoring/self-assessment, and summative assessments as appropriate for your lesson. Assessment strategies and resources should tie to your lesson's learning intentions and success criteria. Remember that assessment of student learning and mastery can be conducted in a variety of ways, including:

    • Questioning
    • Feedback loops
    • Student self-reflection
    • Assignments
    • Performances
    • Presentations
    • Tests/Quizzes
    • Observations
    • Products

    Attach or link to any needed assessment files.

    Be sure to attach rubrics for any assessments included in your lesson using the "Attach Section Resources" button below. Rubric attachments could be screenshots of rubrics created in Canvas, spreadsheets or documents containing rubrics, or rubrics created using the UEN Rubric Tool.