Spring Time Visitors

Lately we have been noticing some new spring visitors around. The first one we have been seeing we named Tom. He is a swan. He seems to live on the reservoir near our house. Unfortunately we only see him when we are in the car and cannot get close enough to the water safely to get a picture of him. (There is no sidewalk on the water side of the street and it is a busy street.) I am pretty sure Tom is a mute swan. Here is a picture I found on line of a mute swan.
Our other visitors showed up this morning. I believe they are the same Mr. and Mrs. Mallard that we fed last spring. They live at the pond at one end of the brook that goes around our back yard. The pond is at the other end of our street. At least that is where I have seen them recently. My guess is they have a nest somewhere along the brook since last spring Mr. Mallard came by himself later in the spring.
Needless to say Hazel loves having the ducks come visit our house and we run out and feed them. Afterall her best friend is a duck.

When we started noticing Tom, Hazel began asking questions about what swans eat. I had to do a little research. I googled it but also we went to the library to find some books about swans. The first is a non-fiction book, Swans by Lynn M. Stone. It is a little above Hazel's age level, but she definitely got some good information from it, and I learned a lot more about swans. It is a chapter book with five chapters and lots of pictures.
The next one we got is Little Swan by Jonathan London. This is a picture book that follows a young cygnet from hatching to migrating the first time with details about eating, swimming, etc. This is more age appropriate for Hazel. It is about trumpeter swans, but is general enough for information about most swans in North America.

With our visitors this morning we also pulled out our favorite duck themed books. The first being a classic from this area, Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey. This book takes place in Boston and tell the story of Mr. and Mrs. Mallard looking for the best place for their nest and then having the eggs hatch and the ducklings, etc. and making their home in the Public Garden in downtown Boston. To show how much this book means to Boston, there are statues of the Make Way for Duckling Ducks in the Public Garden.

And of course we pulled out the classic, Ugly Duckling, which of course combines both types of visitors for us.

Well Hazel has a bit of a fever today. When I spoke to the nurse at her pediatrician's office she said there are many viruses going around with just a fever and no other symptoms, so it looks as though Hazel caught one. So we are having a day of rest even though it is beautiful outside. Ugh!!
Our First Version of Tom the Swan

Well this morning we did some crafts. We started with some paper plate crafts. All you need for any of these is a paper plate, paint, feathers, glue and construction paper and googly eyes. We made a swan and a mallard couple.
Hazel decorated both sides of Mrs. Mallard.
That is what we have been up to. More duck and swan crafts to come. Hope you are having a great day!


Lina Staub said...

Super cute craft! And I just love when people pair their crafts with books. I love your selection! I'm a preschool teacher, so I will definitely be doing this with my kids in the future! Thank you!

Simply Tasheena said...

This is too cute. I would love for you to link up at my Linky Party via:

Mrs. Delightful

The CSI Girl said...

Love it!!1 Cute idea. I hope you will come link it up to The CSI Project. The challenge is embossing and paper crafts. And paper plates fit the category. I love paper plate crafts and still do themm with my girls. even though they are getting older. I have to try this one.

Carrie said...

Just did. Thank you for the invitation!

Unknown said...

Adorable! I love pairing crafts with books! I'm now following via Google - found you via One Art Momma. Thanks for sharing & linking!

I would love for you to stop by and visit @

Have a wonderful evening!


Cacheymama said...

What an interesting animal to be friends with. The duck is fun, but the swan is really unique. I love the books you found as well. My son is just starting to make the sound of a duck and he thinks it's pretty funny :) Thanks for linking up to Thinky Linky Thursday!
Lori @ Cachey Mama’s Classroom

Terri @ A Creative Princess said...

What a darling idea with the paper plates! Just too cute! Thank you so much for linking up to It's a Party!

Meaningful Mama said...

Cute little project. Thanks for all the duck resources.

Unknown said...

This came out so cute! We are huge fans of Make Way for Ducklings. It's Riley's great grandma's favorite. Thanks so much for sharing at Whimsy Wednesdays.

Alison @ Oopsey Daisy said...

I love your paper plate crafts!! Thanks for sharing at oopsey daisy!

Alexis Tanner Lane said...

This is so smart! I love that you read books and made a craft to go with what your child was interested in. I can't wait for my daughter to get a little older so I can start teaching her things like this too. Thanks for linking to What I Learned Wednesday! I hope to see you again at the link party tomorrow!

Trish - Mom On Timeout said...

I so love that you link real-life with curriculum! Thank you so much for sharing at Mom on Timeout!

Carla at Preschool Powol Packets said...

Wonderful! I love how you tied her current interests into the curriculum! Thanks so much for sharing it at Teach Me Tuesday! See ya' tomorrow!

cheapcraftymama said...

LOVE this! I'm featuring it on my post today about "Top 10 Things To Make Out of Paper Plates @ Feel free to grab a button! Thanks!

sunnymama said...

We love Make Way For Ducklings! Thank you so much for sharing this with our spring carnival. :) Just wanted to let you know that I featured your post here: