Grace Jordan Elementary

What's New

LOVE Birds

March 19, 2016 - 7:27pm -- jenniferbond

by Shadrach

Just like people birds love too. Mr.Ridenhour talked to Mrs.Bond´s class about love birds on Friday, February 26, 2016. They loved Mr.Ridenhour´s presentation.

Birds have courtship behaviors for many reasons. The first reason is to attract a mate. The second reason is to help distinguish (identify) different species. Third, it reduces territory aggression (fights). Also courtship behaviors display health, strength, and desirability.

There are many different types of courtship behaviors, such as singing, feather displays, dancing, preening feathers, and nest building. The most interesting one was feather displays such as puffing out bright air sacs.

It’s not only people that love, but birds do too. Thanks Mr. Ridenhour for giving a hilarious, yet educational presentation about love birds.

How Birds Survive the Winter

February 3, 2016 - 9:16am -- jenniferbond

by Izzy and Tabitha

On January 22, 2016, Mr. Ridenhour came to Mrs. Bond’s classroom. While he was there he taught the class how birds survive the winter. Birds   have certain behaviors and adaptations that they can use to keep themselves warm. One adaption they use is tucking their feet into their breast feathers so their feet stay warm.

Did you know? Bigger birds can survive the winter better than smaller birds. Smaller birds have a higher metabolism, or energy to live. The smaller you are the less body heat you make, so you have to burn more food to stay warm.  Bigger birds survive better because they have more body heat, a slower metabolism and use less energy to find food than smaller birds. Mr. Ridenhour explained that some birds can shut their metabolism off and save energy!


Mr. Ridenhour Shares the Joy of Feeding Birds

January 2, 2016 - 10:51am -- jenniferbond

by reporters: Savanna and Shad



Mr. Ridenhour visited Mrs. Bond’s 5th grade class on Friday, December 12, 2015. His presentation was about feeding birds in your backyard. He told Mrs. Bond’s class three things about feeders. First, Mr. Ridenhour explained the types of feeders. Next, he described where to put the feeders. Then, he told the class about feeder maintenance and species of birds he saw in his backyard.

To start, Mr. Ridenhour explained to the class five types of feeders. The platform, the hopper, and the window feeder were the first three. Next, the niger feeder, and the suet feeder were the last two.

Mr. Ridenhour described to the class where they should put feeders. First, he told the class to put feeders in a quiet place that’s easy to see and easy to refill. Mr. Ridenhour also told Mrs. Bond’s class to put feeders less than three feet away from the window to prevent birds from flying into the window.

Next Mr. Ridenhour educated Mrs. Bond’s students about feeder maintenance. Clean feeders regularly he said to prevent disease. Finally, he amazed his listeners with how many species of birds he has seen in his backyard. Mr. Ridenhour told the class that he has seen 70 different species of birds in his backyard!

In end, Mr. Ridenhour surprised the class with their very own hopper feeder and seed from Julie Steele at Wild Birds Unlimited. Although assembling feeders was a challenge, fun was had by all! Students plan to hang them at home and watch the birds and squirrels flock. Thank you Mr. Ridenhour and Mrs. Steele for sharing the joy of feeding birds.


Mr. Ridenhour's Visit

November 4, 2015 - 10:13am -- jenniferbond

By reporters: Izzy and Tabitha

On Friday October 23, 2015 Mr.Ridenhour visited Mrs. Bond’s class. He brought two of his owls Digger and Merlin. Digger is a burrowing owl (small brown owl in the cage) and Merlin is a great horned owl.(He looks like he has horns.)

Mr.Ridenhour taught us about the warning signs that most owls use. The signs are: first they will puff out their feathers if you get to close, if you don’t go away they will start clicking their beaks and hissing, if you still don’t go away they will bite at you or scratch at you.

When Mr. Ridenhour came he taught us about the superpowers of owls.The powers that he talked about were: amazing hearing, spectacular sight, and the silent flight of owls.These are the main superpowers of owls. In order to learn more about these powers of theirs we watched the PBS Nature episode “Owl Power” in class.

An owl’s hearing is very important to an owl. They use their hearing for finding food and hearing their owlets calling to them. “How do they hear if they don’t have ears?” you might ask. Well in fact they do have ears just not like us humans do. Their ears are hidden by their feathers so you can’t see them. One thing that helps owls hear is their facial disk. It helps so if they hear something that is far away they can feel it bounce off. Another thing that helps is that they have one ear higher than the other; that way they know where, how high, or how low their prey is. Having one ear higher than the other is sort of like an alien species. Even though it might sound weird, it is helpful.

Owls' sight is almost as important as their hearing. Their hearing can help them hunt, but it can’t keep them from running into a tree. Owls have a lot of rod cells which are very sensitive to light. This helps them see at night. They see things two and a half times brighter than us. This can help them get home and keeps them from running into things in the dark. Did you know that owl’s eyes are sooo big that they take up 70 % of their skull? Human eyes only take up 5% of our skull.

Mr. Ridenhour explained owls are slower because of the way their wings and feathers are built. Their feathers are built in order to stop turbulence from being created, but this also makes them slower. Some other birds, of prey like the hawk, have feathers that are stiff so they can go faster but are louder. Owls have soft downy feathers that are quieter but slower. Mr. Ridenhour explained that owls have comb-like fringes on one side of the wing, the other side of the wing is sort of tattered looking. This lets air pass gently through the wings instead of making turbulence, which make noise.


Mrs. Bond’s class learned about the superpowers of owl. They are continuing to learn about these amazing creatures. In our opinion, owls are amazing birds! What do you think?


What we've seen this school year


Species Count Disposition Date and Time Link

White-crowned Sparrow (Zonotrichia leucophrys)
1 Feeder 11/17/2017 - 11:15am Details

House Finch (Carpodacus mexicanus)
5 Feeder 11/15/2017 - 11:00am Details

Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura)
3 Ground 11/15/2017 - 11:00am Details

American Goldfinch (Carduelis tristis)
1 Feeder 11/14/2017 - 11:00am Details

Spotted Towhee (Pipilo maculatus)
1 Feeder 11/14/2017 - 11:00am Details

American Goldfinch (Carduelis tristis)
4 Feeder 11/10/2017 - 10:45am Details

Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura)
5 Ground 11/08/2017 - 8:15am Details

Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura)
6 Ground 11/02/2017 - 12:15pm Details

European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)
8 Ground 10/31/2017 - 11:00am Details

Lark Sparrow (Chondestes grammacus)
1 Feeder 10/26/2017 - 1:30pm Details


Ian Neely, Grade 6
Boise, Idaho USA


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