If Miss Meghan doesn’t have toddlers buzzing around her at Montessori Tides School, there’s a good chance that honeybees will be.
Miss Meghan is a beekeeper with four hives at home and two that she manages for others. She brought her demonstration beehive, beekeeping equipment and honey to MTS to share her love for this important pollinator with the Elementary students.
Honeybees have been around for millions of years. A hive, she said, consists of the queen; workers, who collect nectar and make all of the hive decisions; and drones, who mate with the queen, who can lay 1,500 to 2,000 eggs a day in the spring.
After discussing the life cycle of the honeybee, Miss Meghan demonstrated how she uses her beekeeping equipment to protect herself and the bees. She also talked about how she uses her Montessori training in her approach to beekeeping: She tries to be present, or in the moment, when she approaches her beehives, much like approaching the toddlers in her classroom.
The students then broke into groups to further investigate the bees. As they rotated around the classroom, one group checked out the equipment. Another group watched the bees in the demonstration hive and tasted honey an area farm and honey from Miss Meghan’s hives.
A third group answered in their nature journals the questions Miss Meghan asked them:
- If you were a bee, what would you want to do? Collect nectar? Be a nurse or a cleaner?
- If you were a bee, why, as a human, should I care about you?
One Lower Elementary students wrote:
“If I were a bee, I would want to be a worker bee. I want to be a worker bee because they make all the choices. They work hard and play an important role taking care of the queen bee. Bees are also very important to our society. They are important because they pollinate all the plants and fruits and vegetables. If the worker bees didn’t pollinate plants, then the plants could not grow and we would have no plants.”
Miss Meghan shared her love and respect for these tiny creatures that pollinate so much of the world’s food and wild plants. The students picked up on this and were buzzing about bees.