For two glorious months, one lucky family gets an intimate peek at the daily activities of a mother hummingbird and her babies. Nest building, egg hatching, flying lessons--the family sees it all unfold on the back patio. Share the experience through this poignant journal of poems filled with funny observations, fascinating hummingbird facts, and unforgettable moments.
Claudia Lewis Poetry Award
John Burroughs Nature Award
The ASPCA Henry Bergh Children’s Book Award
The long, beautifully written notes with astonishing facts about hummingbirds make this a fine choice for both language arts and science classes. As in the best nature writing, the excitement here is in the particulars that bring readers close up to a universe. Hazel Rochman Booklist, starred review

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Hummingbird Nest in the classroom

About writing Hummingbird Nest

Hummingbirds in my backyard
Awards | Honors | Reviews

by Kristine O'Connell George
Illustrated by Lauren Stringer 
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
    ISBN 0-15-202-501-4
Ages 6 to 10

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Hummingbird Nest: A Journal of Poems
in the Classroom

 Barry Moser 2004. All rights reserved.
A wonderful quote we just couldn't squeeze into the book . . .

I send you whithal a little Box, with A Curiosity in it, which perhaps will be counted a trifle, yet ‘tis rarely to be met with even here.  It is the curiously contrived Nest of a Humming Bird, so called from the humming noise it maketh whilst it flies.  ‘Tis an exceeding little Bird, and only seen in Summer, and mostly in Gardens, flying from flower to flower…

                 The Honorable John Winthrop
                   Governor of Connecticut 1670

See the Teacher's Guide for activities, videos, and additional resources and information about hummingbirds.


My first video! I like to think Anna or her babies. might be part of this crowd!

About writing Hummingbird Nest:
A Journal of Poems

First time out of the nest

The woods hold not such another gem
as the nest of the hummingbird.
The finding of one is an event.

- John Burroughs, naturalist

Imagine my family's delight when we realized that a mother hummingbird was building a nest in the small potted tree on our back patio! For roughly two months, we had our very own private nature show — live and in full color! Publication of Hummingbird Nest has been a wonderful way to remember this extraordinary experience  — from nest building to two successful solos.

 The photo above was taken about an hour after the second bird left the nest and made his first wobbly flight. (This is one of only a handful of pictures I took because I didn't want to disturb the mother and risk causing her to abandon her nest.) After his "solo" the tiny bird sat on a branch and chirped piteously; I was so relieved to see "mom" return. Thank goodness! (One of the many things I learned about hummingbirds is that the mother cares for her fledglings for a few days after they leave the nest.) 

 Shortly after that, fledgling and mom disappeared from our yard; our hummingbird drama was officially over. I feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to share our experience with readers through my poetry and Barry Moser's exquisite watercolors. As John Burroughs says in his quote above, the finding a hummingbird nest is "an event." It truly is!


Awards & Honors

Claudia Lewis Poetry Award
John Burroughs Nature Award
The ASPCA Henry Bergh Children’s Book Award
NCTE Notable Children's Book Language Arts
Booklinks Lasting Connections
CCBC Choices
Nominated for the Texas Bluebonnet Master List -
South Carolina Picture Book Award
KIND Children's Honor Book
2 Starred Reviews!


"As in the best nature writing, the excitement here is in the particulars that bring readers up close to universe." Booklist, starred review

"Sublime illustrations and keenly observant verse are sure to captivate in this collection about a hummingbird who sets up house in the author's backyard..." Publishers Weekly, starred review

"An engaging cycle of poems...The watercolor illustrations, though not to scale, capture some of the magic of watching the tiny bird and her babies... Lots of extra information about hummingbirds for those who fall under their spell."  New York Times Book Review

Table of Contents


"Breakfast on the Patio"
"Spiders, Beware!"
"Nest Construction"
"The Dog Complains"
"The Cat Remarks"
"Nest Check"


"Just Hatched"
"Finding Eggshells"
"A Bird's-Eye View"
"Feed Me! Feed Me!"
"Flight Practice"
"Sky's Invitation"
"Left Behind"
"Empty Nest"
"New Visitors"

Author's Note
More About Hummingbirds
Books About Hummingbirds


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