Skip to main content

Hudson River Park’s STEM Activity of the Week offers free online resources for students and families to learn about the Hudson River. With many learning opportunities moving to online and virtual platforms, we have started this series to share a hands-on activity that is a fun and engaging way to connect with the Hudson River.

Check back weekly for new lessons focused on Hudson River ecology, Park research and sustainability, and be sure to check out our previous activities.

STEM Activity of the Week

Bird Beak Buffet

Hudson River Park provides important habitat to over 100 species of birds that fly through the Park every year! This STEM Activity of the Week teaches students how each bird species has unique adaptations to help them get the food they need to survive with an interactive game we like to call Bird Beak Buffet. Students will discover how specific beak shapes are indicators of where, how and what a bird eats. The diversity of beak shapes within the park allows for so many species to thrive right here in our backyard.

Bird photo by Hudson River Park Naturalist, Keith Michael
Photo by Hudson River Park Naturalist, Keith Michael


Download This Week’s Lesson

Themes: Birds, Adaptation, Habitat
Prep Time: 5 min
Activity Time: 20 min


Translated Lessons

Previous STEM Activities

This lesson teaches students to identify the physical features that define birds.

Hudson River Park provides important habitat to over 100 species of birds that fly through the Park every year!

There are over 100 species of birds that fly through the park every year, so it is a big job trying to keep track of them all and in this lesson, we’re asking for your help!

Did you know that Hudson River Park’s Estuarine Sanctuary provides essential habitat for more than 70 species of fish?

New York City is right in the middle of an environment we call the Hudson River Estuary.

Did you know that the greenish hue of the Hudson River Estuary is an indicator of health rather than toxicity?

Students in this lesson trial various materials in finding the right combination in order to filter artificial pollution using simple household items.

This lesson breaks down the butterfly pollination process, inviting students to observe how butterflies move pollen between plants.

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a marine scientist?

Now that we’re familiar with our fish ecology survey, it is time for you to take on the role of a Hudson River Park scientist once again!

The Hudson River Estuary is a biodiverse habitat in NYC and is home to many species of fish!

Hudson River Park is home to a variety of butterflies within its four miles of lush plant beds and gardens.

This lesson teaches students about bacteria using an experiment to detect bacteria in their environment.

Oyster toadfish live in Hudson River Park’s estuarine sanctuary, croak like toads despite not having vocal organs, and have powerful jaws strong enough to chomp through hard shells.

Plankton are the foundation of the Hudson River food web and provide oxygen to a variety of organisms in the River.

This lesson explores plastic’s impacts on Hudson River wildlife and food web.

This lesson demonstrates how plastics end up in the Hudson River and prompts students to investigate plastic use in their daily lives.

This lesson focuses on building solutions to fight climate change impacts. Explore how adaptation methods are used and design structures that are commonly applied in the real world to protect our shorelines!

This lesson demonstrates that Earth’s water is all connected and that the water cycle guarantees this.

Create your own Wildlife Puppet and watch your critters come to life!