On Memorial Weekend, we culminated our work with our bee expedition by holding a booth at the Columbia Heights Farmers Market. We had two goals: first, to educate the public about Colony Collapse Disorder; and second, to raise money to buy a beehive for the rooftop of our school.
To prepare, students rolled beeswax candles, which they sold for five dollars a set. Thanks to the families of Cheyenne, Nico, Jada, and Rebecca for helping us in the classroom with the candle making! When they learned about pollination in the garden with Ms. Yamamoto, Akesh’s mom, they planted seeds for plants that honeybees pollinate, like watermelon, cucumber, zucchini, and sweet peppers. They sold the seedlings for three dollars each.
Then, the students practiced persuasive writing by writing persuasive paragraphs that persuade people to advocate for bees. They brainstormed reasons why bees are important and turned those into a persuasive paragraph that also detailed the steps of the pollination process. A group of students worked together to combine students’ individual paragraphs into one class paragraph. That paragraph was turned into a tag for the plants. Similarly, they wrote a paragraph about beeswax and its many uses for the beeswax candles. Jener, Natalie, and Rebecca drew pictures of honeybees for the bee tags, while many other students drew the fruits and vegetables for the plant tags.
Students made signs, flyers, and posters to teach others about their learning and the importance of the honeybee.
Once we were there, students passed out flyers, sold candles, and taught the public about the importance of advocating for honeybees.
Altogether we raised close to six hundred dollars to put toward a rooftop beehive for our school! Perhaps more importantly, though, our students had the opportunity to advocate for a cause they worked for and share their learning broadly.