Learning Kits

Available for Checkout!

NOTE: Audubon Learning Kits are now located at Lone Pine State Park! Lone Pine Visitor Center Staff will assist you with checkouts and returns. Call them at 755-2706 Ext. 2, or email Julia Smit (julia.smit@mt.gov) for directions and help. (You may request delivery and pick-up by one of our Audubon Volunteer Ambassadors!)

Flathead Audubon Society has educational materials for teachers, home-schoolers, and others interested in birds, their habitats, and conservation. All Kits are free of charge.

Preschool Bird Costume
Build a Bird Costume

(Click on Kit names for contents and description.)

https://www.flatheadaudubon.org/learn/educational-trunk-checkout-procedures/

Flathead Audubon Bird-related Learning Kits

(Updated 05/16/2022)

Common Birds of the Flathead Kit – Appropriate for middle elementary to high school ages.  Students will learn about the most visible birds around Flathead Valley. Learning kit includes 2 PowerPoint Presentations, CD, photos, books, activities and worksheets. (Standards LS4.C, LS3.A, LS3.B)

Build a Bird and Costume Kit – for pre-school to middle elementary ages.  What’s a great way to learn about birds? By becoming one of course!  This learning kit provides a costume to dress your students up with all the major bird adaptations to turn them into “real” birds of a feather, and real feathers for show as you create your bird. (Disciplinary Core Ideas MT Science Standards LS1.C, LS3.A, LS3.B, LS4.C LS1.A)

Chickadee Who’s Who? Bird ID Basics Kit  – for Grades 3 – 8. Using an interchangeable-parts  “Chickadee costume”, students will dress each other as a Black-capped, Mountain, Boreal, or Chestnut-backed Chickadee by changing the head-piece and / or tunic front and back of the costume. The changes will be subtle, so at each change, students will read about the habitat, habits and listen to vocalizations for that particular species of Chickadee – to associate the “look” of each bird to information which shows other ways of separating their identities. (Disciplinary Core Ideas MT Science Standards LS1.C, LS3.A, LS3.B, LS4.C LS1.A)

NEW! Wetland Kids! Kit — (Grades 4 -6) Streamside art activities, origami water critters, the roles of water organisms in producing / consuming / decomposing, water food webs, making new food webs, wetland zone activities, and a wetland metaphors language arts activity, making tabletop watersheds. MT 5 Standards PS3-1, LS1-1. LS2-1, PS3-D, LS!-C, LS2-A, LS2-B

NEW! I’m Made of Water! Kit – (Grades 5 -12) Tracing our “water address”,  water quality in upstream and downstream watersheds, how clean is clear water, how pollution concentrates in birds, river hydrology changes over decades using old maps, invasive species impacts on wildlife and habitat (Standards LS1.A, LS1.B, LS1.C, LS2.A, LS2.B, LS2.C, LS4.C, PS3.D, ESS2.C, ESS3.C, ESS3.D)

The following four learning kits are specifically designed for our 7th and 8th grades Bird Education Units, consisting of classroom presentations, a week-long learning kit visit to classrooms, followed by field trips to observe the spectacular bird life in the Flathead Valley.

NEW! Sandhill Cranes Kit –  (Grades 7, 8) Crane Biology and Body Language narrated PowerPoints (available on YouTube), costumes, games, and art projects. Perfect for pre-loading learning for a fall field trip to the West Valley ponds to observe hundreds! (Standards MS: LS1.A, LS1.B, LS1.C, LS2.A, LS2.B, LS2.C, LS4.C, PS3.D, ESS2.C, ESS3.C, ESS3.D)

NEW! Winter Birds of Prey Kit – (Grades 7, 8) Starting with a Birds of Prey PowerPoint, then full-sized laminated Birds of Prey from Below flight silhouettes (with a written  key to Identification) can be hung in the classroom, and perched raptors flash cards with range maps will help students learn ID skills in preparation for a bus-tour field trip  in Lower or West Valley to observe birds of prey who have migrated from the north. (Standards MS: LS1.A, LS1.B, LS1.C, LS2.A, LS2.B, LS2.C, LS4.C, PS3.D, ESS2.C, ESS3.C, ESS3.D)

NEW! Spring Waterfowl Migrations Kit – (Grades 7,8) Ducks and Swans Identification narrated PowerPoint on YouTube, “Where’s the White?” flashcards of migrating ducks in poor light, migration highways adventures and headaches of the thousands of waterfowl seen in early spring here in the Flathead will prepare students to take a field trip to see them! (Standards MS: LS1.A, LS1.B, LS1.C, LS2.A, LS2.B, LS2.C, LS4.C, PS3.D, ESS2.C, ESS3.C, ESS3.D)

NEW River-bottom Bird Songs and Ospreys Kit – (Grades 7, 8) Osprey Biology PowerPoint, Learning Bird Songs PowerPoint, Art Projects, activities about songbirds and their river habitats. Preparation for a river-bottom field trip to do breeding bird surveys and Osprey nest observation. (Standards MS: LS1.A, LS1.B, LS1.C, LS2.A, LS2.B, LS2.C, LS4.C, PS3.D, ESS2.C, ESS3.C, ESS3.D)

Field Studies Kit – There are two learning kits of materials available for field studies: Kit #1 (in two boxes, for 5th grade and above) is a classroom set of 20 National Geographic Bird Guides and 20 Eagle Optics 6.5 x 32 binoculars. An extra optional 12 “7×35” power Nikon binoculars can be added for larger classes. For younger students (2nd to 5th grade) there is also a classroom set of 10 Montana Birds field guides and 8 smaller-sized binoculars that are “8×28” power. The second set can also be used by older students. Use of these kits can help your students gain basic birding skills including use and care of binoculars and bird identification techniques! 

Cavity Nesters Kit – (appropriate for middle elementary through middle school ages). Tell the wonderful story of life in dead trees! Students will explore the adaptations and life cycles of native birds that use dead trees for food and shelter. Kit includes puppets, activity pages, preserved bird specimens, real cavity nests and much, much more! (Standards LS4.D, LS4.C)

Hummingbirds Kit – (appropriate for middle elementary through middle school ages). Did you know a hummingbird only weighs as much as a penny? Learn all about this lightweight of the bird world with the Hummingbird Learning Kit! Kit includes a 30 minute narrative with visual aids, puppets and puppet show scripts, specimens, research units on our native hummingbirds and a “humdinger” of a resource notebook full of great lessons and activities. (Standards LS3.A, LS3.B, LS2.A)

Owls Kit – (Grades K-5) Includes owl specimens, dissected pellets, tools to dissect your own pellets (you’ll need to supply the pellets themselves), a bird costume, funnels to demonstrate asymmetrical hearing, skull, talon, wing, books and a teacher guide with lesson plan ideas. (Standards LS3.A, LS3.B)

Snowy Owls – Whoo Are They? Kit  (Appropriate from Elementary to Middle School ages.)  Book and Kit – Audubon and the Owl Research Institute have joined together to develop this trunk based on the book written by Ansley Watson Ford and Denver Holt. (Standards LS3.A, LS3.B, LS4.C

The Changing Neighborhood Kit – (appropriate from Pre-school to Primary Elementary School.)  Use felt figures to relay the story of environmental change and the effects of change on native species.  (Standards LS1.C, ESS3.C, ETS1.B, LS4.C, LS2.C)

Supplemental Materials Boxes

Flathead Audubon also has boxes of supplemental materials relating to birds, which can be checked out online. They include:

Plush Toy Birds and Puppets Box (good for stimulating the interest in birds for pre-school and primary ages)

Bird Skins (fragile and very difficult to replace; need extra care in handling)

Bird Feathers (wide variety and difficult to replace)

Nests and Eggs (fragile; recommended for older students,

Grow Native: School Gardens Resource Box (for ideas on landscaping school grounds for wildlife)

All above Kits and boxes are available free from the Flathead Audubon Chapter (Contact Lone Pine State Park at 406/755-2963 for pick-up. Reservations online through Flathead Audubon’s website (flatheadaudubon.org / Education / Learning Kits > scroll to individual Kits).  Contact educator@flatheadaudubon.org for further questions. 

Also available from other sources for bird education:

Songbird Kit – (Grades K-8) – free from Glacier National Park. This dynamic trunk has activities geared for the classroom as well as outdoors relating to songbirds and migration. Resource materials, activities, videos, a felt storyboard, posters, recorded bird songs, and puppets all help students learn more about the natural history of several Montana songbirds.

Loon Trunk – (Grades pre-K-12) – free from Montana Loon Society (or call the Flathead National Forest Supervisor’s Office 406/758-5204 or twenum@fs.fed.us) – Meet “Lottie” the Loon, who plays a true loon wail, learn how to identify a loon by dressing up a student, participate in games to learn how pollution is harmful to loons through the process of bioaccumulation; examine topographic maps to determine what lakes would make a good territory for a pair of nesting loons. This box contains a wealth of fun, hands-on items including a loon egg replica, puppets, scripts, videos, posters and much more to learn about Montana Loons. A three-ring notebook is full of lesson and activity ideas that meet Montana Content and Performance Standards for science, math, social studies, art, and language arts.

NOTE: Audubon Learning Kits are now located at Lone Pine State Park! Lone Pine Visitor Center Staff will assist you with checkouts and returns. Call them at 755-2706 Ext. 2,or email Julia Smit (julia.smit@mt.gov) for directions and help. (NEW! You may request delivery and pick-up by one of our Audubon Volunteer Ambassadors!)

Flathead Audubon Society has educational materials for teachers, home-schoolers, and others interested in birds, their habitats, and conservation. All Learning Kits are loaned free of charge.

Use these Learning Kits and materials to build, enhance, or tie into a class unit on birds or a complementary habitat topic! These hands-on and interactive materials will provide your students with unique and fun learning opportunity.

To find out more about these Learning Kits, just click on a specific Kit in the scroll-down menu, or  contact the Flathead Audubon Conservation Educator at educator@flatheadaudubon.org.