Guest teacher keeps students all abuzz

Before the holidays, we were delighted to welcome a guest teacher to our garden class. Andrea Supergan is a master beekeeper, veteran teacher, Julian local and our volunteer of the semester. Andrea joined every class, over two weeks (!) to teach action-packed lessons on the importance of bees. Mati compiled this amazing list of of activities students enjoyed:

-Pirate’s Booty in a clear jar with wrapped candy at the bottom. Much like a bee, the student were covered in cheese powder (pollen) in a effort to locate the candy (nectar).

-Blind taste test of honey from both Julian and NYC. Students voted for the best flavor and then the origins were revealed.

-Food coloring in water in clear plastic egg trays. Students used plastic pipettes to move liquid from one cell to the next. This was used to represent the work that a bee does to harvest and move nectar.

-Students used microscopes to see slides of antenna, legs and a section of wing. 

-Beekeeper suits and bee box tools for the students to try on and pose for a photo in.

-Boards shaped like a honey comb with bees placed on top. Each bee had a paper clip attached. Students could then move a magnet on the underside of the board and make the bee dance. This represented the bees giving directions to the location of nectar sources by way of body movements.

-Plastic bee models that could be taken apart and put back together.

-Cardstock beehive boxes that were folded three dimensionally. Each box had a cute felted queen bee and three puffy worker bee stickers to place on the outside. Each student took one home and was deemed an honorary beekeeper.

Just amazing! You can find Andrea’s line of local bee products at Manzanita Supply in Santa Ysabel. You can also follow her work on Instagram #thebohemianbeellc We are so glad to partner with you Andrea!

Food Day, I

Thank you’s have been sent, accounting is done, now all that is left to do for Food Day 2016 is the storytelling.  As always, it’s a big story so I am breaking it into parts.

If you’ve followed along, you know that for the last three years we have celebrated National Food Day with a full day of experiential workshops on cooking, nutrition and agriculture at Julian Elementary and Julian Junior High.  (See posts from past years here, here, here, and here.)

One partnership I’d like to highlight is our partnership with Sun Dog Art Studios of Ramona.  Tomi and Teal, the talented, warm, vision-filled artists behind this non-profit, partnered with us last year (“Soda is the monster we need to mash”) and joined us again this year to create “bee spas” with the children (small basins from which bees can safely drink.)  They put a lot of time and research into creating the project from scratch, we collected tons of materials, and student were able to learn about the importance of pollinators and then take home a beautiful product.

The beautiful visual aids Sun Dog created to go with the lesson:

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Days ahead of Food Day, Sun Dog glued 110 glass basins to the glass jelly, olive, and mason jars to make a basin with a pedestal.

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Students then painted the “baths” as well as a big stone to sit in the middle of gravel and glass gems. (An “island” or a landing spot for the bee.)

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Once dry, the baths were sent home with students (carefully! in boxes with bubble wrap) and a selection went to the Julian library for a display.

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Thank you Sun Dog once again for your delightful partnership!  We love that a beautiful art project is a key part of our Food Day celebrations!