This spring has certainly been a busy one for Planet Bee. We've worked at a variety of events, taught thousands of students, and even ran a 5K! Here's the update on what your favorite hive of worker bees has been up to.
From the beginning of March to the end of May, Planet Bee educators have taught our Humble Honey Bee lesson at 20 schools, reaching more than 2,500 students.
We also completed the pilot phase of our ZomBee Watch program, teaching Days 1-3 of our curriculum at schools across the Bay Area!
Our teachers Sarah and Ayla created an alternate Day 3 lesson for students who didn't catch any ZomBees (good news for the bees!), which involved examining the insects they did catch, classifying them by order, recording and graphing their data, and analyzing their results. By the end of June we will have completed the pilot phase of our remote ZomBee Watch program as well, when we have our final skype session with 250 7th graders at Sandwich STEM Academy in Cape Cod, Massachusetts.
California Academy of Sciences Pollinator Festival
For 6 Sundays in a row, from March 19th to April 23rd, Planet Bee tabled at Cal Academy. We brought along our observation hive of live bees, our popular tabletop pollination game, our hands-on educational materials, and materials for seed-ball making. Estimating that about 500 people a day visited our table, we reached 3,000 children and adults, inspiring them to take individual action to help save the bees!
Burroughs Family Farms Run Happy Bee Happy 5K Run
Our amazing partner Benina Montes hosted a 5K Run and day of fun in the sun to raise money for Planet Bee! We had a wonderful time hanging out with the petting zoo (Debra particularly loved the camel!), chowing down on delicious organic fare, raffling off a beehive and some honey in the silent auction, and watching the race!
California Honey Festival
We were overjoyed when we were asked to table and give public presentations at the California Honey Festival in Woodland. There was honey galore, live music, a man in a bee suit, and delicious food. Our educators Sarah and Ayla took center stage and put on a performance for the kids which walked them through the life stages of a honey bee and the three types of games, before ending with a pollination game in which the audience joined! Both girls were able to unleash their passions-- Sarah, who majored in Dance, did some fantastic interpretive dancing, while Ayla, who majored in English and loves creative writing, told the story. Fun was had by all!
UC Davis Bee Symposium
We were so proud to be invited to this prestigious and exclusive symposium! We learned way more about bees than we'd ever imagined, from experts hailing from across the globe. Our favorite presentation was done by a Harvard Professor who had devised a way to monitor the movements of individual bumble bees by attaching QR codes to their fuzzy backs! Then we got on stage, and told the audience all about our new ZomBee Watch classroom program. It heartened us to know how many brilliant people are working day and night to study bees and find ways to save them!
Community Picnic: Fruit and Veggie Fest
Planet Bee had a blast at this fun-filled event, hosted by the Marin Health and Wellness Center to educate the residents of Marin's Canal District about healthy eating options. There was dancing, more mascots than we'd ever seen in our lives, delicious food, a singer crooning Spanish love songs, and Zumba!
Other events we visited included the Environmental Youth Forum of San Rafael, where we met some live bats and a group of brilliant middle schoolers who started their own nonprofit called Heirs to Our Ocean; and Google Earth Day.
We are so proud of all our progress. It couldn't have been done without you! But our mission is far from over.
As long as the bees consider to struggle, we will be working tirelessly to educate the public about this important issue and create the next generation of environmental stewards. This fall, we want to teach at least another 3,000 students, and to provide our lessons to high need schools at no cost, ensuring environmental justice. But to do that we need your support. Please consider donating to Planet Bee today! Every $10 you donate allows us to inspire another child to love bees and protect the environment.
Join us as we change the world-- one bee and one student at a time!
Written by Ayla Fudala
Staff Writer and Environmental Educator