The Cornell Lab of Ornithology is celebrating urban birds and so can your family. They'll send you a free kit in exchange for ten minutes of observing birds and submitting your results. What a great way to have kids stop and observe nature, even in an urban environment, and learn more about the birds around them. How urban do you have to be? Observations from suburbs, small towns, and small and large cities will be helpful (Canada too).
What's in the kit? Two posters, a data form to record your observations, a welcome letter which serves as a brief field guide to the sixteen birds they'd like you to look for, and "zero means a lot stickers" meant to reinforce the idea that observing zero birds in ten minutes is helpful information.
Each child or family is asked to familiarize themselves with the sixteen birds and then watch an area about half the size of a basketball court for ten minutes. There's room on the form (which you submit online) for three different observation periods, but the second two are optional.
Learn more about other activities related to Celebrate Urban Birds, request your free kit, or, if you're so inclined, make a donation to the project here.