What's Going On?

Busy bee

Activity overview

15 mins
Ages 5 – 7 , Ages 7 – 9

Science topics:

Animals, including humans , Living things and their habitats

Spark a conversation with this video showing a busy bee collect nectar and pollen. This activity is great for describing observations and applying ideas in unfamiliar contexts.

Run the activity

1. You’re going to watch a short video. The aim isn't to find right answers, it's to explore ideas and find out what they know.

  • Do they know what might happen based on the image?

2. After you've watched the video, lead a discussion with your class:

  • What living things do they see?
  • Why might the bee be attracted to the sunflower?
  • What could the bee be doing on the flower?
  • Have the pupils seen any bees on the school grounds?

3. Ask the class to describe what they saw using only one word.

Background science

The video is showing a very busy bee who is collecting nectar from a sunflower. The flower's nectar is broken down by the bee into sugars and then stored inside the honeycomb. The shape of the honeycomb and the constant fanning of the bee's wings causes these sugars to become a sweet liquid, honey. 

Take it further

Ask your children if they have seen any bees visit the school grounds. Why would they like some flowers more than others? Children could investigate what colour flowers bees prefer. They will need to decide how to carry how their investigation. How long will they spend observing the flowers? How will they record how many bees or other pollinators visit each colour flower? How will they present their results? Afterwards the children could read this BBC Bitesize article to see if they agree. 

Try this fun activity from STEM learning with your children, where they turn into bees for an afternoon, teaching them about pollination and bee behaviour.

Find out more about the importance of bees with this guide from the BBC. Have a look at another What's Going On? video showing Spring flowers that bees would be sure to like! 


Image: Naoki Nastume via Flickr CC BY-ND 2.0
Video: Jeff Kastner via Vimeo All Rights Reserved