Honeybee Unit Study and Party PDF Print E-mail
Delightful Surprises

 

HONEYBEE UNIT STUDY AND PARTY

Buzz along with us and enjoy a delightful selection of pictures from our Bee Party

 

For the following unit study, I actually tacked a Bit of Honey candy bar on the board next to the note on Honeybees and adorable stickers of Pooh Bear with his hand in the honey jar.

 

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THE BUZZ ON SUMMER FUN

It was not until farmer Jon came into my life that I even knew honey was a staple food item for everyday consumption. As a matter of fact, Jon uses honey every day either on his toast, biscuit, muffin, or in his tea, something that I never did growing up. Not so with our children. Jon started making honey butter for their bread when they were just knee high to puddle ducks. As a boy, Jon and his father would actually gather honey from colonies lodged in hollow trees in their woods.

Since bees pollinate over a third of all the foods we consume, it is very disheartening to realize the alarming rate at which honeybee colonies are disappearing. Jon and I have always wanted hives but cannot have them where we live now, however for those of you have property, consider raising bees.

 

BUSY AS BEES

To begin our study, we did all of the following except the bee-nesting box, which we still intend to construct.

-Study bees

-Read Outside and Inside Killer bees by Sandra Markle and Honeybees by Joyce Milton.

-Read cute books on bees: The Mole Sisters and the Busy Bees by Roslyn Schwartz and Ruby Lee the Bumble Bee by Dawn Matheson (of course we refuted the idea that talked about believing in yourself.)

-Watch the Magic School Bus on bees.


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-Build a bee-nesting box; plans are available on www.xerces.org.

-Download and read the Bee Book on www.helpthehoneybees.com.

-Visit a local honey producer and see the work of a beekeeper in process.

-Purchase your honey from a local producer. Eating honey created by local bees taken from plants indigenous to your area is very important for boosting your family’s immunity against allergies to local pollens.

 

SOMETHING TO HUM ABOUT

-Plant a flower garden or plant flowers in your vegetable garden for the bees to hum about. Plant a variety of flowers of varying colors and heights. Keep a shallow pan of water in your garden for the bees to sip while pollinating your plants. We keep a clay saucer filled with pebbles and water in our garden so the insects have a place to roost while they sip.
 

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THE BUZZ ON SURPRISES THAT ARE SURE TO MAKE YOUR

FAMILY HUM Give these gifts throughout your study or give them after your “beeautiful, beeountiful, beeffet”.

-If you do not have a honey pot, consider purchasing one for your family as part of this study. Local potters usually carry them. Don’t forget to get one with a wooden dipper that you use to twirl the honey on the stick so as not to drip honey when transporting it from pot to food.

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-Winnie the Pooh books and movies. I just adore Winnie the Pooh!


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-Winnie the Pooh Playing Cards and the Pooh Memory Game make adorable gifts for your children. I have enjoyed playing with these cards as much as the children.

 

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-Box of honey bear shaped graham crackers
-Bit of Honey candy is a nice sweet treat.


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CREATE BEEUTIFUL PLACE CARDS
Since we did not have bee stickers that were small enough for our place cards, we used these lovely insect stickers, along with markers and colored pencils, to create these adorable place cards.

 

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A BEEUTIFUL TABLE
To create an adorable setting for our honeybee party, I had Jedidiah suspend a cute bumblebee from the center finial of our dining room light fixture with fishing line. He then hung our outdoor paper lantern lights. Once in place, I directed him to drape black crepe paper streamers over our table.

 

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After covering the table with a yellow plastic table covering, Sonia and I taped strips of black crepe paper at pleasing intervals to replicate the cute bumblebee.


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For our centerpiece, I tucked the bodice of a flower summer dress inside the skirt, inserted a slender vase of silk flowers into the opening, and then poofed the skirt out around the vase.


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Around this colorful attraction, I began positioning other complimentary decorations-an adorable bunny sitting on top of a floral watering can, silk roses surrounding a votive in a painted clay pot, fruit garland, brass butterfly, yellow ceramic bunny, little lantern covered with insects, a bunny in back of another watering can, and plastic insects scattered throughout.

 

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Many years ago, the children and I created floral napkin ring holders out of colorful felt squares. Into these, we inserted rose-colored napkins and paper flowers. The tissue flowers were hot glued onto green pipe cleaners.


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BOTTLED JUICES in INSECT BUCKETS
We keep these juice bottles for picnic dinners but also for parties, as we refill them with colorful juices such as grape, orange, and grapefruit to add to our table’s décor. For this particular party, we placed them in our insect buckets filled with ice to keep them cold.

 

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PASS THE HONEY, BEES (just a cute play on words for please)
 

Beehive Butter-this is an adorable spread, one which our family really enjoyed.

1 ½ C butter, softened
½ C spicy brown mustard
1 C finely chopped pecans, toasted
1 pecan half
Garnish: fresh herbs, edible flower petals.
Stir together first 3 ingredients
Form butter mixture into a beehive shape. Smooth mound with a spatula or rounded knife. Form grooves around mound with tines of a fork. Insert pecan half near the base for a door; chill 2 hours or up to 2 days. You may garnish with herbs and flowers at the base of the hive.

 

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Ham Sandwiches
Make your favorite biscuit recipe. Between each sliced biscuit, insert a slice of baked ham. Then spread the Beehive Butter on your sandwiches right before you eat them, so you have time to enjoy the beehive on the table.

 

Stuffed Eggs
To make perfect golden hard-boiled eggs, place the eggs in cold water. Bring the water to a boil. Immediately turn off the heat, cover with a lid, and allow the eggs to sit in the hot water for 10 minutes. Mix the mashed yolks with Miracle Whip, Dijon mustard, salt, pepper, chives, and dill.

 

SLAW
For a delicious slaw, combine sliced or grated green cabbage, red cabbage, carrots, apples, and chopped green onions. For the dressing combine Miracle Whip, apple cider vinegar, salt, cracked pepper, and plenty of honey to create a delightfully sweet salad.

 

Baklava
Many shy away from attempting this delicious dessert because it requires working with finicky Phyllo pastry; however, once you follow a few simple techniques, baklava becomes easy. Just remember to thaw pastry according to the directions. Once out of the plastic case, keep covered with damp towel at all times. Cut the layers the size of your pan, and be sure to butter every leaf. Please note: It seems to me that when I made this last time, the company had changed the size and amount of their sheets of Phyllo. Please read the box to make certain that the package contains 24 sheets of pastry. If not, thaw another package.

1 C ground walnuts
1 C ground almonds
1/3 C sugar
1/4 t cinnamon
1/8 t cloves
1¾ C butter, melted
1 box Phyllo pastry (thaw according to directions)

Syrup

¾ C sugar
¾ C honey
4 whole cloves
1½ T lemon juice
1¾ C water.

Combine the ingredients. Bring to a boil, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Simmer uncovered for 20 minutes. Strain out cloves.

Mix the first 5 ingredients and divide nut mixture evenly into 3 bowls. Melt butter. Uncover Phyllo pastry leaves. Working very quickly, place jellyroll pan on top of leaves, aligning it in one corner and down side. With sharp knife, cut around pan so leaves fit the exact size of pan. Quickly cover leaves with damp towel (wet towel with warm water and wring out). Place pan to right of leaves. Brush pan with butter. Remove towel. From top using both hands, pull one leaf off and place in pan starting with edges lined up at bottom. Immediately re-cover pastry leaves with damp towel. Brush leaf with melted butter.

Repeat this procedure with 5 more sheets of pastry, buttering every layer as you go. Then cover with one of the 3 bowls of nuts. Continue process by alternating pastry and nuts so you end up with 4 layers of pastry and 3 layers of nuts.

Using sharp knife, cut diagonally from corner to corner every inch. Then repeat from opposite corners so you end up with diamond shapes.

Bake at 350º for 30 minutes. Turn off heat and allow to remain in oven 30 more minutes. While waiting, make syrup. Remove baklava from oven and immediately cover with hot syrup. Allow to sit overnight or for 24 hours before serving. Enjoy!

 

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FROM THE AMERICAN BEE KEEPING FEDERATION
The following is taken from www.americanbeekeepingfederation.com. When replacing sugar with honey in a recipe remember to reduce liquid by ¼ cup for each cup of honey used. Add ½ teaspoon baking soda for each cup honey used. Reduce oven temperature by 25 degrees to prevent over browning. Honey is 25% sweeter than sugar so most recipes need to be adjusted by reducing the amount of honey by ¼ to ½ of what you normally use in sugar.

 

Honey Mustard Dressing
¾ C mayo
1/3 C oil
¼ C honey
¼ C lemon juice
1 T mustard
1 t pepper
½ t onion flakes
 

 

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