Education Program

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In the News

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Explore

  • Overview: Education as part of the Cornell Lab's mission

Publications

We aim for students to investigate their own questions about birds and biodiversity. Beyond the classroom, we spark curiosity, build science skills, and inspire action by lifelong learners within the United States and abroad.

Project Highlights

Lessons and Curricula

Free Lessons

From monthly bird-inspired lessons to full inquiry-based curricula, BirdSleuth lessons encourage students to get outside to explore science through birds and local habitat. Download free lessons.

Kits

BirdSleuth kits and resources encourage 3-8th grade students in classrooms, out of school programs, and beyond to engage in STEM learning by participating in citizen science projects and exploring local habitat. Kits make teaching the lessons easy and fun.

Literature Connections

Trade books can inspire science learning. Find our growing list of books and activities.

Books

Birds Without Borders: Investigating Populations, Habitats, and Conservation Needs of Birds in the U.S. and Abroad
Using interactive online maps and real data, 6-12th grade students address questions such as why bird habitat requirements vary from species to species and why habitat protection for some must span states, countries, and continents. Two investigations are available as free downloads.


Citizen Science: 15 Lessons that Bring Biology to Life
This book supports independent inquiry through which 6-12th grade students learn science content and process skills. It offers 15 stimulating lessons you can use to build data collection and analysis into your teaching – indoors or out, in any season, and addressing organisms from bees to whales. One lesson is available as a free download.

Videos

Inspire, motivate, and engage your students with free online videos highlighting exciting young conservation scientists and their research.

Resources for International Educators

We strive to connect kids to birds in Latin America, the Caribbean, and beyond with resources provided in both Spanish and English.

Articles

Visit BirdSleuth’s blog to find information and resources related to:

• Citizen Science
• Bird Identification
• Bird Biology
• Outdoor Learning

Learn Online

Bird Academy

Explore free and premium content on topics ranging from birding basics to college level ornithology. Bird Academy provides new ways to learn about the world of birds. Learn more.

Webinars

Browse our list of upcoming and archived webinars.

Bird ID Tutorials and Courses


Hone your bird ID skills with these self-paced tutorials and courses:

Be a Better Birder Basics: Size and Shape

Be a Better Birder Basics: Color and Pattern

Spring Field Ornithology

Waterfowl ID (coming soon)

Interactive Features

Deepen your understanding of fascinating aspects of bird biology with these free online interactive activities:

Bird Song Hero

All About Bird Song

All About Feathers

All About Fancy Males

All About Bird Anatomy

Media Library


Select from more than 100 free videos, articles, quizzes, and interactive activities in the media library.

 

Learn at Home

Home Study Course in Bird Biology


At your own pace, learn about bird behavior, migration, ecology, conservation, and many other subjects. Learn college-level ornithology by reading the Handbook of Bird Biology, 2nd edition, and use online quizzes to test your knowledge. NOTE: This course will be replaced when the 3rd edition of the handbook is published in summer 2016. Find out more.

Books and Guides


Handbook of Bird Biology 3rd Edition–coming in 2016

Waterfowl ID foldout guides
This series of three weather-resistant foldout guides provide simple techniques for waterfowl ID based on flashes of white that are easy to see at a distance.

 

Learn at the Lab

Spring Field Ornithology


Whether a beginner or a seasoned birder, you can take your bird ID skills to the next level with this popular 8-week course. Select from lectures in person or online, weekend outings, and special overnight trips to birding hotspots. Learn more.

Monday Night Seminars

The Cornell Lab hosts seminars throughout the year, including our long-running Monday Night Seminar series, a tradition established decades ago by Lab founder Dr. Arthur Allen. Speakers include Cornell Lab staff, book authors, and distinguished scientists from around the world.

Tours

Join Lab staff for a special building tour where you will learn about the history and work of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology as you are guided behind the scenes for an inside look at this 100-year-old institution.

Bird Walks

Join local birders for a walk in the woods guaranteed to improve your birding skills. Led by Cayuga Bird Club members and Lab staff walks will provide you with information on local species and Lab tools that can help you improve your bird ID skills. Check the schedule.

Get Outside

BirdSleuth Explorer’s Guidebook

Get outdoors and explore with this free resource! Kids go on a habitat scavenger hunt, create a sound map, and test their bird ID skills. This step-by-step guide is the result of a partnership with the “Every Kid in a Park” effort. Though it is geared toward fourth grade students, it is highly adaptable for many ages and locations. Link coming soon!

Games

Bird Song Hero

Educational Cards
Bird BINGO, habitat scavenger hunt, and bird ID focus cards can make outdoor learning and exploring fun and engaging.

Plan Your Visit

Individuals and Families

Explore interactive exhibits and world-class art in our Visitor Center, and head outside to four miles of trails in our surrounding Sapsucker Woods sanctuary. More information.

Group Visits

The Lab is a great destination for groups of all ages. Your group can have fun while learning from our introductory film, exhibits, indoor wildlife observation area, and trails in the surrounding Sapsucker Woods sanctuary. Make your reservation today! Learn more.

 

Learn Bird ID

Bird Walks

You can join local birders for a walk in the woods guaranteed to improve your birding skills. Led by Cayuga Bird Club members and Lab staff walks will provide you with information on local species and Lab tools that can help you improve your bird ID skills. Check the schedule.

Spring Field Ornithology

Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned birder, you can take your bird ID skills to the next level with this popular 8-week course. Select from lectures in person or online, weekend outings, and special overnight trips to birding hotspots. Find out more.

 

Learn About the Lab

Building Tours

You may join Lab staff for a special building tour where you will learn about the history and work of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology as you are guided behind the scenes for an inside look at this 100-year-old institution.

 

Programs and Events

Monday Night Seminars

Throughout the year, the Cornell Lab hosts seminars, including our long-running Monday Night Seminar series, a tradition established decades ago by Lab founder Dr. Arthur Allen. Speakers include Cornell Lab staff, book authors, and distinguished scientists from around the world.

Migration Celebration

This family-friendly event gives visitors the unique opportunity to meet Lab staff and scientists right where they work, join in guided bird walks, and enjoy interactive exhibits, live birds, games, face-painting, and hands-on activities. Read more.
A self-paced online tutorial. Learn to ID birds by size and shape
Birds of North America Online, ultimate source for bird info, join for $5/month
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Get delicious, Bird Friendly certified coffee from Birds and Beans.