Science and BEES

This topic encourages children to look more closely at these small living creatures, revealing an exciting world to explore. Because the bee has been so well researched and documented it provides a really good example of a fascinating life system. Children can use a hand lens or microscope to look at the anatomy of the bee and other common insects. Honeybees are cleverly adapted to live through the winter whilst bumble bees and solitary bees hibernate. Honeybees have antennae for touch when they are in the dark hive, a long tongue to reach nectar inside flowers and pollen sacs on their legs to transport the pollen back to the hive. It is a good opportunity to get out into the School grounds and survey the flowers available to bees in the area. The children can observe bees foraging and make and test simple hypotheses.

Learning topics

Looking at minibeasts            Looking at minibeasts drawings           Different sorts of bee        Is it a bee?

Looking at a bee                     Looking at a bee magnified                 Types of bee                   In the hive

In the beehive pg2                 How a honey bee grows                       Hexagons                       Parts of the hive

Parts of the hive continued       Hives                                                Cells in the honeycomb   Watching bees

Inside the beehive worksheet

Useful resources


Close up of Apis mellifera proboscis   Apis mellifera (Honey bee)        Bombus terrestris (Bumblebee)  Colletes hederae (Ivy mining bee)             


Close up of Apis mellifera from above     Bee pupae – by Waugsberg      Julie Vernon – Pollen from various flowers    ED- Leaf Cutter Bee;

Ants nest                                        Apiary                                     Bumblebee in flight                   Butterfly – Peacock  

Butterfly                                         Bees collecting water               Cricket                                     Dragonfly           

Drone                                             Fly                                         Frame                                      Moth    

Queen cells                                     Swarm                                    White tailed bumblebee


Minibeast Hunt -      

Lesson plan: Minibeast Trackers -

Instar magazine – A digital magazine for young entomologists -

Looking at honeybee under microscope -

The Bee, Magnified: Microscopic Photography by Rose-Lynn Fisher -

Bee ID Sheet        

Common bumblebees -           

Why do bees make hexagons with Brian Cox -

Slow motion video of various bees -

A huge thank you to our generous Bees in the Curriculum Sponsor National Bee Supplies