Backyard Bumble Bee

This week we are going to make a bumble bee together. When you are done making your bee we will take it on a journey through your backyard and see what interesting things she finds there.

You may have seen a few bumble bees already this year, maybe you thought they looked very big!

The first bumble bees you see in the spring are almost always queens looking for a nesting site. Bumble bees around here tend to make nests deep underground or in very undisturbed parts of yards like siding, under stairs and eves. Bumble been nests are generally quite small and only used for about four months before the queen moves out to find somewhere to hibernate until next year.

You will need:

  • A cone (alder, pine, fir, whatever you can find)
  • Yellow yarn or wool
  • A scrap of stiff clear plastic or netting
  • A long piece of string
  • A stick half as long as your arm

Have a watch of this little video from Essex Wildlife Trust to see how you can make your little bee on a stick. She is making a mobile but we are going to just have one been on a stick.

Pinecone Weaving

Did you find any pine cones on your treasure hunt?

Pine cones are tons of fun because they can be used to make A LOT of different things.

When I was a preschooler my sister and I used to make pine cones into birds with leaves and tree sap.
Pine cones can be pretty pokey. You have to hold them very gently so you don’t get poked!

Can you turn a pinecone into a Easter Egg?

What about a tree?

Maybe an animal?

Ask a grownup to tie a piece of yarn onto the stem of your pine cone and see if you can wrap the whole piece around it. You can use whatever colour of yarn you like.

To the grownups:

You can use a lot of different things to challenge your little one to wrap around a pine cone.
If yarn is really easy try rubber bands or pipe cleaners.

There are quite a few wrapping activities in these pages because wrapping is an important skill to build upon. Wrapping is a foundation to knot tying which is a foundation to den building and fort building.

If your child isn’t interested in this context there are many more opportunities to practice.

Wrapping a pipe cleaner around a stick makes a caterpillar 😉