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Beautiful Bees

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Biology Volunteer Activities
Main Image
Biology Volunteer Activities
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Time Needed for Activity

Students build a bee from foam balls and pipe cleaners to learn the anatomy of the bee, make a proboscis to "eat like a bee" and learn the bee waggle dance.

If you don't drop materials off to a school, alternate materials that can be found at home are given for making a bee.

What You Need

Materials if being dropped off at a school:

Activity 1: Bee Anatomy Activity 2: Eat Like a Bee Activity 3: Communicate like a Bee
Foam balls (3 per student) Cardstock flowers (1 per student) Link to the waggle dance - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-7ijI-g4jHg
Toothpicks (2 per student) Sticky and soft velcro (1 small piece per student)  
Shiny eyes (2 per student) 1/2 sheet of printer paper  
Pipe Cleaners (3 per student) 1 straw  
6 legs - 6 pieces that are 1/4 the length of a pipe cleaner 1 rubber brand  
2 anntennae, a proboscis and a stinger - 4 pieces that are 1/8 the length of a pipe cleaner 1 paper flower  
2 wings - 1/2 the length of a pipe cleaner    

 

Materials if NOT being dropped off at a school:

Activity 1: Bee Anatomy Activity 2: Eat Like a Bee Activity 3: Communicate like a Bee
3 foam balls (or 3 balls of clay) - 1.5 diameter each 1 sheet of 8.5 x 11 inch paper cut lengthwise Link to the waggle dance: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-7ijI-g4jHg
2 Toothpicks if using foam balls 1 paper straw  
Marker to make eyes 1 small piece of soft velcro  
3 Pipe Cleaners for legs, wings, antennae, stinger and proboscis Elastic/rubber band/hair elastic  
  Scissors and tape  

 

Lesson:

PowerPoint:

 

Safety Notes

As a Let’s Talk Science volunteer, safety must be foremost in our minds during all activities. As STEM role models, volunteers must always also model safe science practices.

Always keep in mind the following precautions:

  • Emphasize and demonstrate appropriate safety procedures throughout the presentation.
  • Be professional but have fun.
  • Keep workspaces clean to avoid tripping hazards.
  • Allergens should have been checked before reserving the kit (e.g. allergies to latex).

What To Do

Activity 1: Bee Anatomy

The educator will distribute the materials to the students. Students will get to make a model bee by using the materials to make the body, legs, antennae, stinger, proboscis, wings and eyes.

Activity 2: Eat Like a Bee

Have the educator distribute the materials for this activity.

  1. Take the half sheet of paper and fold the two sides towards the middle of the paper lengthwise.
  2. Put a piece of tape down the middle to hold the folded parts down as in the photo.
  3. Fold about a half a centimetre of the paper at one end and tape it down as in the photo.
  4. From the end that is folded and taped, roll the paper tightly all the way to the other end to create a cylinder.
  5. Let the paper roll go while you do the next step.
  6. Insert about 1-2 cm of the straw into the opening at the end of the roll of paper and tape it in place.
  7. Tape along the rest of the open end so it is closed. This is your proboscis.
  8. Place a small piece of Velcro on the end of the roll that doesn’t have the straw so when it unrolls the Velcro is oriented toward the floor.
  9. Reroll the rolled part and put an elastic around the roll. Let this sit 1-3 hours so it will keep its shape when you blow it.
  10. Using the paper flower or a flower you draw and cut out, place a piece of Velcro in the middle (or a piece of tape if the students are at home with no Velcro) (this is pretend nectar).
  11. Blow into your proboscis and try to collect nectar by having the proboscis stick to the tape on the flower.

Activity 3: Communicate Like a Bee

Show students the video of the waggle dance on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-7ijI-g4jHg

Discovery

Resources

Lesson:

PowerPoint:

 

Resources

Lesson:

PowerPoint: