We often buy apples in bigger patches. Then it can happen that one or the other apple gets ‘too old’ to be really good to eat. Instead of just throwing them in the bin, we ‘gift’ them to our local birdlife. This is a project that you can do with your toddler, both having fun and supporting nature and wildlife. Teaching your kid to be caring and good to animals can help to raise it into a compassionate and empathic adult.
- Some apples
- Twigs of 20 -30 cm / 8 – 12 inches length (same amount as apples)
- Ribbons of 50 – 60 / 20 – 24 inches length (same amount as apples)
- larding pin, or knitting needle, or a sturdy straight stick or twig
(please always take care for your toddler / child not to reach the needle or to get access to your material unattended!)
(wash the apples in case your toddler / child wants to take a bite 😉 )
First we collect our material. Go and look for as many twigs as you have apples to use. You can do this in your own garden, or take the chance to do a lovely nature walk with your toddler. Beautiful twigs can be found pretty much everywhere, in the park, in the woods, or just in the nearby countryside. We collected a few twigs from our roof garden. Your twigs should be about 20 – 30 cm / 8 – 12 inches long. They will act as landing support for the birds, so don’t make them too short. Then prepare the ribbons in the same amount you have apples and twigs. We have used lovely red cotton ribbons in 50 – 60 cm / 20 – 24 inches length. You will also need a larding pin, a knitting needle, or a sturdy and straight twig or stick to push through the apples.
The first steps are for mommy or daddy to do (please always take care for your toddler / child not to reach the needle or to get access to your material unattended!). My toddler had been happily playing with twigs and apples while i did the preparations. First push the needle through your apple from one side to the other to have a channel, where in the next step the ribbon will be pushed through.
Now thread the ribbon into the hole in the apple
Push your ribbon through the apple with help of the pin, needle or twig that you made the hole with.
Now get your twigs ready
Choose one apple with ribbon and one twig to be combined, you can also let your kid do this … i had to do the ‘push ribbon through’ point again a few times, as my toddler had much fun to pulling the thread out of the apples again 😉
Wrap one end of the ribbon over the twig.
And secure the ribbon on the twig with a double knot.
In the meantime my toddler had much fun taking a mini-bite of one of the apples. No harm, as the apples were washed and they also had been good still.
Now pull the ribbon, secured on the twig, through the apple, so the twig holds the apple on the bottom.
Now choose some nice spots in your garden, or surrounding countryside to hang the apples, to invite the local birdlife to come and snack on them 🙂 Best ist to choose a spot where you have already seen birds landing, sitting, feeding and resting. Also a spot where they can land nearby to check out and look at the new snack is helpful.
Have a joyful time in nature and with your child!