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Take a Peek at a School Bird Festival

Students Help Flying WILD Take Flight!

The Flying WILD National Office chose Johnston Middle School in Houston, Texas to serve as the pilot school for its Flying WILD program. Students participated in activities from Flying WILD: An Educator's Guide to Celebrating Birds to learn more about birds and their conservation needs. Then on the evening of Tuesday, September 28, 2004, they exhibited what they learned at a school-wide bird festival. Held in conjunction with the school's annual Family Math and Science night, the event drew over 693 students, families, and educators from the Houston area - a great turnout for the highly anticipated debut of Flying WILD. Amidst elaborate bird drawings, collage posters, paper putting greens, and a live screech owl, students led and participated in numerous interactive activities—all relating to the amazing world of migratory birds. Scroll down to see just a few of the many educational and fun festival booths in action.


Take a Peek Inside


"Bird" Banding

After signing in at the door, each visitor

received a numbered “bird band” wrist

bracelet and had their "wingspans"

measured. Once recorded, guests

were free to visit the

activity booths.

"Fill the Bill"

Visitor simulated trying to eat with different types of bird beaks to learn that different birds are specialized to eat different foods.

"Hidden Hazards"

Visitors traversed an obstacle course

teaching about many of the dangers

migratory birds face.

Birds on Display

Posters and student artwork lined the back wall of the cafeteria, illustrating the beauty of birds and the importance of birds to people.

Live Animal Demonstrations

Visitors took a close looks at the

"birdy" features of live parakeets. They also met a live screech owl and learned more about how experts rehabilitate injured wild birds.




to Save"

Guests enjoyed a quick game of Putt-Putt Golf that included an explanation of the habitat needs of birds.


"Bird Olympics"

Visitors participated in activities designed

to illustrate how their abilities measure up

against the amazing abilities of birds.



"Bird Buffet"

Students created bird feeders

to help them attract and

observe birds in their

own backyards.


"Food for the Brood"

Visitors ran a

relay race to simulate the

effort bird

parents exert

to feed their



"The Birding Beat"

Students helped adults to locate and identify several hidden bird species in the school's wildlife habitat





The piloting effort for Flying WILD, which included this Flying WILD with Math and Science event, was funded by the Environmental Protection Agency, Region VI. The event was a great success, and will serve as a model of how other schools can bring students, parents, educators and community partners together to learn about and celebrate migratory birds. For more information about the Flying WILD program, contact the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies at 713-520-1936.




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Photo credit: Galveston Bay Foundation

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