Teaching Kids About Real Angry Birds

Laura Kromer is a retired medical professional and hands on grandmother, living in rural Georgia. She is a freelance writer and contributor for the family and lifestyle blog About a Mom.

Like most kids, my granddaughters are really into the Angry Birds game and pretty much all things Angry Birds. I don’t mind so much, since the game does have some redeeming qualities beyond entertainment. It can be used to teach basic physics principles and more. In fact, some teachers have brought Angry Birds into the classroom. I have used the girl’s interest in Angry Birds to teach them about the real angry birds that are found in nature.

My family is so excited about the new Destination Wild Specials that will premiere Sundays on Nat Geo WILD. The specials kick off on Sunday, July 12, 9/8c with Real Angry Birds. We are anticipating the special with much curiosity. How will the birds be different from or the same as the birds in our yard? How do you know when a bird is really angry? There are so many things we look forward to learning from Real Angry Birds.

What can children learn from birds?

Birds are fascinating to watch because they can fly. It is also interesting to study their diverse and beautiful feather colors and patterns as well as their chirping sounds.

Kids can learn so much by caring for birds. Providing birds with food, clean water and nesting materials is a great way to help them out, but also attract them to your yard.

Real-Angry-Birds2The feeders in my yard have attracted birds in a variety of colors and sizes. It’s fun trying to recognize a type of bird from just their song. You don’t have to invest a lot of money in fancy feeders. Kids can simply spread peanut butter and bird seed onto a pine cone or cardboard tube, for a tasty bird treat. Hummingbird food can be made by mixing 1 part sugar with 4 parts water. Bring to a boil to kill any bacteria or mold present. Cool and fill feeder.You can also help feed birds naturally by planting native plants in your yard.

You’ll learn that not all birds eat the same thing. Hummingbirds, for example, require their own feeders and food which you can make yourself. Even with four feeders, the Hummingbirds in my yard fight non-stop. Talk about angry birds!

How do you identify birds?

Binoculars, birding books and websites can all help kids identify the birds in your yard. Is that bird in your yard just passing through? There is so much to learn about different bird species, like where they live and what is their migration path.

What are some things to look for while bird watching?

Color: Birds’ feathers come in all colors and patterns.

Bee-eaters belong to the most colourful European birds.  (Photo credit:  © Klaus Weißmann, naturfilm.com / NDR Naturfilm / Doclights GmbH)
Bee-eaters belong to the most colorful European birds. (Photo credit: © Klaus Weißmann, naturfilm.com / NDR Naturfilm / Doclights GmbH)

Speed: Birds are amazingly swift flyers. Kids will have fun comparing the paces of different birds. Who will break the record for speed?

Personality: Birds have many personality traits. Birds can be outgoing, shy, friendly, aggressive and very intelligent. Which personality traits does your child relate to?

Song: The range of tones and pitches can produce varies greatly. You might be surprised by the big song coming from the littlest birds. Children who love music will enjoy listening to birds sing.

Kids have so much to learn from birds and seem to naturally identify with animals. Caring for birds teaches kids compassion and empathy for animals. It helps teach them to respect and treat those who are different from them with kindness.

“Angry Birds” is an addictive game, but are there real angry birds out there? What happens when they stop being polite and start getting mad? For the aviary set, every day is a battle to survive, find food and shelter, and stay out of harm’s way. Tune in for a bird’s-eye view of our feathered friends’ fights, singing battles and dance-offs.

Real Angry Birds is sure to be both educational and fun for the whole family. Real Angry Birds Premieres Sunday, July 12, 9/8c