STEM Friday

Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Books

Explore Honey Bees!

ExploreHoneyBees_CoverExplore Honey Bees! with 25 great projects
by Cindy Blobaum; illus. by Bryan Stone
96 pages; ages 7-10
Nomad Press, 2015

This book is hot off the press and just in time because in just 10 days we begin celebrating National Pollinator Week. It’s chock-full of all things honey bee: anatomy, social behavior, a tour of the bee hive, There are lots and lots of things to do. Twenty-five of ’em, in fact. You can try stinger designs, check out what you’d see if you had bee eyes, and try your luck at communicating the location of sweets with a waggle dance. My favorite is how to make a bee buzzer.

There are lots of sidebars and text boxes with highlighted information, and cartoony illustrations to keep things light and fun. And there are lots of new words to learn, like spiracle, and pheromone. You can’t learn about bees without learning some flower anatomy too. Because if you can’t find the stamens, you can’t collect that high-value food, pollen.

If pollen is important to honey bees, it’s doubly important to flowers. They can’t make their seeds (or fruit) if the pollen doesn’t find its way to the stigma. Fortunately, honey bees – and wild bees – do a good job of helping move the pollen. Though they do it by accident.

The last chapter focuses on threats to bees: colony collapse disorder, climate change, and pesticides. But there’s hope – and there are things you can do to help make the world a safer place for bees. One thing is to plant a honey bee garden. Another is to not spray pesticides in your garden and yard, and even the trees.

The book ends with a fun mad lib, a glossary, index, and list of resources – and a handy metric conversion chart so you can start thinking like a bee scientist and talk about meters instead of yards. Review copy from the publisher.

STEM Friday

It’s STEM Friday! (STEM is Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics)

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Author: Sue Heavenrich

I write about science and environmental issues for children and their families.

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