Friday, May 16, 2014


I've just been reading the crazy number of Food Revolution Activities that are going on all around the world RIGHT NOW!   Kids are cooking in Australia, Taiwan, Philippines, Canada, South America. 
I have done my little part here in western Massachusetts today.  

Without bees we would not even have the fresh foods we need to eat.  So I started at the very beginning with my bees and with the youngest school kids at the Early Learning Center in Greenfield, MA.  The children have spent all week learning and leading up to this event.  I am honored to have been their beekeeping friend today.

Here is what went down:
This nice frame of bees and brood were taken from the big hive and placed into:

…this amazing yellow demonstration hive from Warm Colors Apiary.  Thanks, Bonita and Dan!

I didn't want to disturb the colony too much this week, so I only took one frame.  But really, this left the top frame as a great white backdrop on which to watch individual bees.  The yellow is beeswax that I painted on the Pierco frame to get the bees started according to the folks at Better Bee.  The Pink Queen stayed at home today.

Even the littlest people enjoyed the morning.

The children pretended to be bees taking nectar from the flowers.  There was buzzing and arm flapping and HONEY STRAWS!!!

More honey straw fun.  The children also tried on bee veils and really enjoyed just pumping the bellows on two empty bee smokers.  I always take my fuzzy stuffed bees with me.  Why not!?

It is fun to get a very close up view of bees.   I was enjoying watch one poor bee working hard with some piece of white  something that she wanted, desperately, to take out as trash.  But the door was closed.  She ran all over carrying her load.  I had hoped we could see some brood emerge from these cells, but it didn't pan out.

This is Ed.  He is father of two,  and also a local beekeeper.  He is explaining how hive boxes get stacked up very high sometimes.   I took in only two boxes along with the bottom board and covers and a queen excluder.  These smart little kids ALL knew that the queen was the biggest bee.  There was, however, disappointment that there is not a KING BEE.  :(

The boxes come apart and the frames are lifted in and out, and in and out, and in and out, and in and out, and. . .

Nala, daughter of the lovely PTO head of this class, is all dressed in her bee tutu and enjoying her honey straw.
The PTO did a great job all week, I can tell, by how involved all the children were.  We did four separate 20 minute sessions--just right for 4 and 5 year olds.

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