Peanut Butter Play Dough
3 cups powdered sugar
2 cups smooth peanut butter
¾ cup honey
In large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients. Mix until ingredients are combined. Turn dough out onto clean work surface; knead like bread dough until play dough is smooth. Store at room temperature in an air-tight container. Makes about four cups. Decorate play dough creations with chocolate chips, pretzel sticks, mini marshmallows, wafers and candy sprinkles!

Career Explorations
What's the buzz? "Buzz" is a popular term used in the business world right now. You hear marketing types speaking of generating "buzz" for their products. What does this mean? Discuss this with your kids. What sound does a bee make? What sound do people make when everyone is talking at once? This is what businesses want! They want everyone to talk about their product--to tell their friends about it, to discuss it with their neighbors, to talk about it at work. Make a list of methods that businesses use to generate "buzz" for their products. Learn about different marketing techniques and explore marketing as a career option if your children seem interested in this.

Literature
Enjoy these picture books about bees with your younger children:
Happy Bees by Arthur Yorinks
Ant and Honey Bee: What a Pair! by Megan McDonald
Gran's Bees by Mary Thompson
"Buzz, Buzz, Buzz," Went Bumblebee by Colin West
The Big Honey Hunt by Stan and Jan Berenstain
Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree by A.A. Milne

Writing
Have your child write a poem about bees. Brainstorm together words that describe bees. Here is an example written by an 11-year-old girl. This poem was found on her blog at www.homeschoolblogger.com/willow.

Bees

There are a bunch of bees in a hive,
they make honey,
but not for money.
Bees are very good,
they do as they should.
Bees are yellow and black,
pollen is their snack.
They like flowers,
and they work for hours.
(We should all work like a bee,
shouldn't we?)

Just for Fun

  • My kids really enjoyed a poster that is put out by God's World News entitled Bees in a Box. Using photos and information on beekeeping, the poster gives a great overview on beekeeping. To order this poster, call 1-800-951-5437. 
  • If you would like to find someone in your area who produces honey for sale, or maybe even would be willing to give you and your kids a tour, go to www.honeylocator.com
  • Are your kids interested in keeping bees themselves? Write away for the booklet Starting Right with Bees by Storey Publishing Booklets. Contact them at Storey's Books For Country Living, Storey Communications, Inc., 105 Schoolhouse Rd., Pownal, VT 05261-9988.
  • This site has an essay contest on bees as well as information and lessons: ipm.ncsu.edu/4-H/
  • For fun printable activities for kids, go to www.ncbeekeepers.org/kidlinks.htm.
  • Check out Max Lucado's Hermie and Friends: Buzby the Misbehaving Bee on DVD.

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Marybeth Whalen is the wife of Curt and mother of six. Marybeth writes from home in Charlotte, North Carolina, and has been homeschooling for nine years. She is the author of For the Write Reason and a speaker for Proverbs 31 Ministries. For more information about Marybeth, visit her website at www.marybethwhalen.com or her blog at www.HomeschoolBlogger.com/marybeth.

Copyright 2006. Used with permission. Originally published in the Spring 2006 The Old Schoolhouse Magazine. Right now, 19 free gifts when you subscribe! www.TheHomeschoolMagazine.com