________________ CM . . . . Volume XII Number 12 . . . . February 17, 2006


Bird Feeders. (Kids Can Do It).

Renée Schwarz.
Toronto , ON : Kids Can Press, 2005.
40 pp.,pbk. & cl., $6.95 (pbk.), $14.95 (cl.).
ISBN 1-55337-700-1 (pbk.), ISBN 1-55337-699-4 (cl.).

Subject Heading:
Bird feeders-Design and construction-Juvenile literature.

Grades 3-8 / Ages 8-13.

Review by Janice Foster.

*** /4


The best thing about building bird feeders is seeing the birds come to feed. Check the chart at the back of the book for favourite bird foods. Once birds are used to coming to your feeder, try standing very, very still with some seeds in your hands. You might get some birds, like chickadees, eating out of your hand!


Author and illustrator Renée Schwartz provides young readers and avid crafters with another book of projects using common, often recycled, household materials. Accompanying her recent book, Bird Houses, Bird Feeders provides young people with imaginative ideas to entice birds into their backyards so that they can experience the excitement of birdwatching.

     Bird Feeders is consistent with the format of the other titles in the “Kids Can Do It” series. Schwartz includes nine well-designed projects, each with a coloured photograph of the finished craft as well as lists of materials and tools and step-by step instructions and safety tips. The instructions are accompanied by drawings to add clarity to each step. The materials required consist of common household items, many of them recyclable, such as tin cans and plastic bottles. The introduction states that these bird feeders "can be made in an afternoon and will last for years." That durability comes from the construction process that entails the use of tools such as a coping saw, drill, a hammer, utility knife and others. This list highlights the need for adult supervision in these projects but also provides children with hands-on experiences in building. Each project has room for creative alterations on the part of the young crafter.

     As children watch birds alight on their handmade bird dog, fruit flower or long-nosed, big-eyed bottle bug birdfeeder, they will be fascinated by not only the winged visitors but by their own creation. Bird Feeders is recommended for young crafters interested in natural crafts with access to supervised used of tools. It is a great guide for parents and leaders of children's groups such as Girl Guides and Scouts.


Janice Foster is a teacher librarian in the Pembina Trails School Division in Winnipeg, MB.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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