Our doves have been back, preparing the nest outside of D's window, for their next batch of babies. He's been spending a lot of time watching them, and quite frankly, I've been curious to know what he really sees when he looks at the tree.
He's not much for sketching, but he was willing to trace the nest, and tree for me, on a see through page protector taped to the window. The younger girls (ages 8 and 9) wanted to give it a try too, so I removed the screen, giving us more clear window space to use, and got three different perspectives of the same scene.
Their pictures were somewhat impressionistic, but the children spent a good deal of time really studying the tree - the shape of the branches, the colors, the nest, even the different perspectives they could see by moving their heads. When they had had enough, we took the sheets down, and slipped in a piece of white paper, so their work would show up.
They were surprised at the details they had, and hadn't captured. It doesn't show up well here, but E even made a quick sketch of the bird visiting the nest, while they were drawing.
This is great activity for older children too, learning about perspective.
It's startling to trace the lines of a sidewalk, or street, that you know are parallel, and realize the lines really do appear to be moving closer together the farther down the street you draw.
Oh, and by way of a tip, we found that CrazyArt markers showed up the best on the plastic. We used washable markers, so our drawings weren't permanent. We took pictures of them, and then wiped the plastic clean for use again another time.