As is the case with many educators who love honeybees, one of Sarah’s main goals in her work is to dispel fear surrounding bees. She sees her youngest students as the key to reversing this social fear. “That is why I do what I do,” she says, “to inspire a sense of fascination, wonder, and love at a young age, that I hope turns to understanding or even advocacy as these kids grow into our leaders of tomorrow.” She also sees the need for our society to educate a generation of citizens that understand the complexity of our modern food system and question its flaws. When asked why pollinator education is so important, she answered, “If you can capture the heart and imagination of a child, and release the sweetness and light of the honeybee in them- they will never forget it. By saving the bee, they will save our world.”
-Clearing Magazine, Oct. 2013
What is the "Kids and Bees" Program?
The mission of the Kids and Bees program is to educate the next generation of citizens on the importance of bees and inspire them to take part in the bees' preservation.
The Kids and Bees program was started as a partnership over 20 years ago by "Bee Lady" Kim Lehman, the American Beekeeping Federation, and the Foundation for the Preservation of The Honey Bee. The mission was to create a program open to kids in the community where the North American Beekeeping Conference and Tradeshow is held on an annual basis. Kim did an amazing job bringing bee love to kids in Florida, California, her home state of Texas, and everywhere in-between!
Sarah Red-Laird, "Bee Girl", humbly became the new director of the ABF Kids and Bees program in 2012. She continues to run an event for kids at each national conference, and has also expanded the program to reach as many kids as possible across North America. Through her partnership with the Foundation for the Preservation of Honey Bees, she as been able to bring kids programs to the Eastern and Western Beekeeping Society Conferences. These are always open to the public, so please don't hesitate to contact us for more information.
Bee Girl also offers a traveling Kids and Bees program. She visits students pre-k through 12th grade with a engaging and fun program, complete with a bee lesson, an observational bee hive (weather permitting), and hands-on activites for the kids. Bee Girl can tailor her program to any level for groups of kids from 10 to 500 and more. Check out this video from a Kids and Bees program in Metarie, LA.
If you are an educator, administrator or marketing director interested in having a "Kids and Bees" program at your school or event, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (541) 708-1127 for scheduling and cost information.
Why is it important?
Our bees provide one out of every three bits of food that we eat. No bees, no food, no us. It's also a commonly known fact that our bees are in trouble. Annual losses of honey bee colonies are in the tens of thousands. We are losing our bees at unsustainable rates. It will be up to the next generation to not only understand their importance, but to take action in their conservation. Bee Girl's Kids and Bees program both teaches kids, in a positive and engaging way, why our bees are essential to everyday life and how they can be honey bee heroes.
How can I participate?
Join one of our upcoming programs listed below,
Schdeule Bee Girl for a program at your school, camp, home school group, 4H or FFA meeting, or event,
Start your own program. Learn how by attending Bee Girl's webinar, availible to ABF members (become one here),
Become a sponsor of the Bee Girl orgnization or make a donation to the Foundation for the Preservation of the Honey Bee,
Check out the additional resources below to bring bee education into your classroom.