We had noticed many European bees were dying in our front playground. We counted more than 30 most days fora period of two weeks. We were all very concerned and wondered what we could do to find out what was wrong with the bees and what we could do to help them.
The children drew their theories about what they thought was killing the bees and we had long discussions and investigations daily trying to work out what the problem was.
We explored this thinking using many languages of learning including paint, black fine markers, photographs, digital microscopes, books, videos, loose parts and clay.
We invited two bee keepers to come to the kindy and look at the bees and tell us what bees need to survive.
We had no idea where this process would take us...
We learnt so much about bees and what fascinating animals they are. We learnt how they communicate using their tail, how the queen bee directs the worker bees to where they need to go to collect their pollen, we learnt that they are very protective of each other and if they are hurt the other bees will swarm to protect the injured bee.
Most importantly we learnt how important the bees are to our ecosystem and that the bees both native and European’s numbers are declining rapidly.
We decided, as a community, that we were going to do our best to save the bees.
We approached Bunnings and they donated some bee attracting flowers and plants, we researched what native bees need and planted some bush tucker plants and native plants that these bees like. We made bee hives out of bamboo and clay.
We waited each day to see if the bees would come. Whenever a bee was seen alive and thriving there was great rejoicing amongst the children. Children show us how much empathy and respect they have for their environment and how important caring for it is to them.
A couple of children did get stung by a bee. With each sting, we had great discussions with the children about why the bees do this. At no point, were the children ever scared or upset that this happened as the bees lives were their primary concern. We put safety measures in place including wearing shoes and not touching any bees, these decisions were made by the children.
Families supported our project and began getting their own native bee hives for their backyards.
We painted the most amazing mural in our local park George Willmore, with the message, “Be kind – Grow more flowers.” The painting was a collaboration between our two artist parents Kim Oehlman and Rebecca Holland, the children and educators of Willmore and Moreton Bay Regional Council.
It is our hope that the children’s knowledge and message about saving bees can be spread even further through our beautiful Bee Kind Book by Kim Oehlman.
Money raised from the book will be put back into bee attracting plants and initiatives at Willmore.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT TO COUNTRY
Willmore Kindergarten respectfully acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the lands on which our beautiful Kindergarten is placed.
We pay our respect to all Elders past, present and future.
A Lady Gowrie Affiliate Kindergarten | Government approved
© 2019 Willmore Kindergarten & Preschool Inc