This bird nest craft is easy to make and perfect for a preschooler. Simply use old boxes, scraps of paper, pieces of ribbon, string and twine.
Since we’ve been learning about birds, we made this bird nest craft today. We had fun finding different materials and gluing everything together to make a model nest.
First, it’s important to say that this is just a craft. It’s not a real bird nest, so don’t leave it outside for birds to use. If you are looking for a nest real birds can use, maybe try this.
Pretend to be birds while you collect the materials needed to make this bird nest craft
Making this bird nest craft let us pretend to be birds in a few ways. Like a bird, my kid and I had to scavenge around for materials to use.
While birds fly around and collect twigs, branches, and leaves to make nest, we ran around our house looking for cardboard, paper, old ribbons, and used twine.
Tip: I planned out the materials we would use. Then I gently suggested the ideas to my preschooler when we "flew" around our flat collecting materials. Otherwise, knowing him, it would have been chaos because he would have pulled out way too many materials.
My kid was receptive to my suggestions, but also picked out some things that he wanted to use.
Can you spot our nest?
Materials needed to make this bird nest activity
After a thorough scavenge in our flat, this is what we used in our craft nest:
- an old Amazon box I saved from earlier in the week
- scratch paper from an old painting my kid did
- a toilet roll
- ribbon from a present
- frayed edges from a burlap sack
- twine from an old gift tag
- a couple of feathers from a previous art project
- glitter glue
For this bird nest craft, you can use lots of other materials though. Some other upcycle materials to use include:
- pieces of felt
- an old rag or t-shirt cut into small strips
- the handle from a paper shopping bag
- popsicle sticks
You'll also need a bottle of glue to hold everything together. We just used regular white school glue.
How to make this bird nest craft
To make the bird nest, again you need to pretend you are birds!
How would a bird get the nest to hold together? Sometimes a bird weaves material together. Sometimes birds use mud to help things stick together.
My preschooler and I used both techniques for this craft bird nest. Mainly, we relied on the glue (aka mud), but we also tried to weave some materials together when we could.
Start from the base and build your nest up
Generally, start from the bottom and glue each layer on as you work your way up.
First, use a round piece of cardboard that’s the size of the base of the nest you want. From there, layer and glue pieces of stuff around the outer edge.
Start with strips of cardboard. Once the nest is about halfway of the height you want it to have, start gluing on the ribbons, twine, and whatever else you may be using.
Decorate the nest at the end to personalize it
At the end, we decorated our finished nest a bit with glitter glue. Remember when I said my kid picked out a few materials he wanted to use? He really wanted glitter glue!
We also saved the feathers to glue in the middle inside. That way, the eggs would stay cozy and warm.
And once we completed our nest, instead of putting in a real or fake egg, my preschooler was adamant we use a wooden strawberry. As it turned out, he had a really clever reason. The strawberry that we used can be sliced in half. That's where the imaginary chick would hatch out.
Tips for making this bird nest craft with a preschooler
This is a fairly easy and simple craft. It mostly just requires a bit of patience to let the glue dry.
Prepare the materials before you start gluing and assembling the nest
Because I used a variety of materials, I needed quite a bit of glue to hold all the materials together. Our hands got a bit sticky making this.
So our tip here is to make sure you prepare the materials before you start gluing. This means, for example:
- ripping the cardboard box into thin strips
- cutting the ribbon to small strips, as desired
Space the twine and ribbon throughout the nest
When we started gluing the bird nest together, my kid reached for the ribbon first. I know kids find it exciting to use fun craft materials, but try to start with the cardboard first. Making the base of the nest with cardboard will make the nest sturdier.
Also, we didn't have that much ribbon, so I didn't want it all to be covered by cardboard.
Let the nest dry fully
This is one of the hardest part of making crafts with a kid - letting whatever you make dry. I used quite a lot of glue to hold all the materials together, so this nest took a couple hours to fully dry.
Don't play with it too soon, otherwise the pieces will start falling off.
We hope you enjoy making this bird nest craft
We loved making this pretend bird nest craft and we hope you do too! It was fun to learn about and pretend to be birds as we made it, and it's become a good prop to use in our pretend play.