Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Birding Basics for Kids

I am excited to announce an upcoming project that I'll be involved in at Dr. Sun Yat Sen Classical Chinese Garden. In March, our artist collective Second Site will be creating rain-powered and rain-inspired site-specific art in the garden. For my part, I will be directing a performance art choir that you and your family can join. We'll be improvising a sound piece inspired by rain and phonetic bird calls on Saturday March 16. Stay tuned for more information!

As you follow this blog I will document the process of research and creation for this piece which is called A Cloud of Starlings. One of the resources I'm going to share with you today is a great little podcast from NPR on how to get your kids interested in birding. If your family has already done some bird watching, then this might be too basic for you, but for others, it gives some great ideas to the beginning birder, including keeping a diary of all your sightings. The podcast is called How Birds Can Capture a Kid's Imagination.

If you've got older kids, say 12 and up, I highly recommend watching The Big Year with Steve Martin and Jack Black. You might want to watch the trailer to see if it's suitable for your family. It's an adventure comedy about three birders who compete to see how many birds they can see and hear in North America in one year. I love the sound track too! The irony is that scenes of the movie were shot in B.C., including the Dr. Sun Yat Sen Chinese Classical Garden. Cool!

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