Five red and blue birds painted on a brown tree.

Easy Bird Art Project for Kids (Science & Nature Activity)

Looking for a simple nature art activity for the kiddos? Well, this bird craft activity is just the thing. The kids can paint a bird picture using craft sponges and also learn interesting bird facts in the process.

Ready to try out an art and science project that’s perfect for both preschool and elementary age kiddos?

One of my favorite things to do is help kids learn about and enjoy nature. And this super easy activity gives kids a hands-on art experience while learning about some cool bird facts!

I found a pack of craft sponges at Walmart that are perfect to make fluffy little birds. The circular sponges come in 3 different sizes which allows you to easily paint birds of different sizes.

First, I’m starting with the craft activity. Then, toward the end of the post I’ll talk about some really cool facts about both Cardinals and Bluejays.

This activity can be tailored to your needs. I chose to create blue and red birds because both Bluejays and Cardinals are such eye-catching birds in our region.

However, you can choose whatever birds are native to your region and just substitute your own colors if need be. And of course, look up some interesting facts about them too to share with the kids!

Now, it’s time for this tutorial on how to do a simple bird painting project with the kids.

Red and blue bird painting using craft sponges.

Supplies for Bird Art Activity for Kids

All the supplies I used for this activity were purchased at Walmart. However, I just keep the lids of old plastic containers sometimes, to use as paint trays.

  • Craft Sponges
  • Craft Paint
  • Paint Tray
  • Craft Paintbrush
  • Cardstock
  • Plastic Cup for Water
  • Gel Pen (Optional)
Supplies including cardstock, craft sponges, paint, paintbrush, paint tray and pen.

And this is what’s in your pack of craft sponges. On the package they are called Foam Spouncers.

Ten craft sponges with packaging.

Paint a Tree on the Cardstock

First up, have the kids paint a tree onto the cardstock paper. I used the paint color Burnt Umber for this tree.

It’s good to have multiple branches to use as a perch for the different birds you will create in the next few steps.

Brown tree with multiple branches painted on cardstock.

If you are working with smaller children, I made a quick digital download of the tree that you can print out. The download is linked below.


Use Craft Sponges to Create the Birds on the Tree

Place red paint on the paint tray and grab your foam spouncers (craft sponges). We used the medium sponge (for the body) and small sponge (for the head) to create smaller birds.

And the large and medium sponges to create larger birds.

First, blot your sponge into the paint. Try to get it evenly distributed on the sponge. I blotted off a little onto the paint tray before applying it to my paper.

Craft sponge and red paint on paint tray.

Create a red bird using the craft sponges on one of the branches of the tree.

Using craft sponge to create a red bird on the painted tree.

Below is a blue bird painted with the medium and large craft sponges. The craft paint color used is Mountain Blue.

Large and medium craft sponges on a paper towel next to a paper with a painted blue bird.

And here’s a red one painted with the small and medium craft sponges. The craft paint color used is Spiced Berry.

Two small and medium craft sponges on a paper towel beside a paper with a painted red bird.

Add the Beak, Feet, Eyes and Wings to the Birds

After creating as many birds as you’d like on the branches, it’s time to add the beaks, feet and wings.

The paint dries pretty quickly, so you don’t have to wait long to add the details.

Using a finer tipped craft paintbrush, paint the beaks on the birds.

Orange was used for the Cardinals, and black was used for the Bluejays. The orange craft paint color we used is Harvest Orange.

Then add the little feet, wings and eyes.

Alternatively, you can use a gel pen to add the black details if that’s easier for the kiddos you’re working with. Just make sure the paint is dry first.

Also, older children could add more details, such as including the white and black markings on their Bluejay painting.

Five red and blue birds on a painted tree on cardstock paper.

And now here’s a close-up!

Five red and blue birds on brown branches.

Well, that’s a wrap, this easy bird painting for kids is completed!

Now it’s time for some fun facts about Cardinals and Bluejays!

Cool Facts About Northern Cardinals

These pretty red birds are members of the finch family.

The male Northern Cardinal has a crest on his head, orange beak and beautiful red feathers. The female also has a crest and orange beak, but she is brown with red accent colors.

These birds are not migratory so if you see them in your area, they will be there all year long!

Both male and female cardinals sing and are able to sing more than 24 different songs. If you hear a bird song sounding like “what cheer, what cheer” or “pew, pew pew” you may just have a cardinal making its home in your backyard.

Cardinal eggs are off-white with brown speckles.

Eating red berries during molting helps male Northern Cardinals have brighter red feathers.

These birds were named after the red garments that Catholic clergy known as Cardinals wore.

For even more information on Northern Cardinals refer to this post from Birds and Blooms.

Interesting Facts About Bluejays

Unlike most other birds, male and female Bluejays look almost exactly the same.

Bluejays are not actually blue. Their feathers are made up of brown colored melanin, however when the light shines on a Bluejay, they appear blue.

Bluejays are very intelligent and are related to Crows.

A favorite food of Bluejays is the acorn.

Bluejays can mimic other birds. Sometimes they will mimic a hawk to warn other birds that this predator is nearby.

Bluejays make the sound “jay-jay-jay” giving them their name. However, they also mimic and make a variety of different sounds from whistling to chirping.

Bluejays do not have regular migration periods. Some will stay in one place all year, while others will fly south during different times of the year.

For even more information about Bluejays refer to this post from A-Z Animals.

Final Thoughts on this Nature Activity for Kids

I spent so much time in nature as a kid, I always enjoy nature crafts. It’s nice that art and science are rolled into one for this project.

The craft sponges are an easy way to have kiddos paint birds, and you can talk about a few interesting facts about different kinds of birds while they are painting.

It’s easy to tailor this activity to whatever bird is common to your region.

For older children, you could even have them choose a bird that they would like to research. Then have them write down 5-10 facts about that bird and paint the same bird afterwards.

I hope you enjoyed this nature project for kids. Any questions, please comment below. And, as always, thanks so much for reading!

Now it’s time to grab cardstock, paint and craft sponges, research a few cool bird facts and do this activity with your own kiddos!

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Bird painting using craft sponges with science facts.

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