Friday, August 15, 2014

Buzzing About National Honey Bee Day

Beekeeping has enjoyed a renaissance of sorts, due in part to rising awareness of the plight of honey bees and the popularity of homesteading skills in general. Since 2009, National Honey Bee Day has been observed to bring attention to the importance of honey bees and the worldwide plight of bee colonies. If you'd like to introduce your children to the fascinating world of honey bees, check out these books:

Megan McDonald is probably best known for her Judy Moody series, but her Ant and Honey Bee series is just as cute.  Ant and Honey Bee have a number of adventures, from preparing to a costume party, to dressing up for Halloween, and braving the cold for a fun visit.

If you're in search of a sweet cooperation story, Bear and Bee should definitely be on your list. If you were a bear and had just awakened from hibernation, would you be in the mood for honey? This bear certainly is! The only trouble is that the nearest beehive is being guarded by a buzzing honey bee.  Looks like bear is out of luck--or is he?

Jam & Honey  strikes a similar "cooperation" theme, this time involving a young girl and a bee. A little girl gathers berries while a bee gathers pollen; although both are initially wary of each other, they manage to go about their business in a respectful and calm manner.  This is a gentle nod to the importance of respecting nature; it would make an excellent addition to an Earth Day story time.

These Bees Count! follows a class on a field trip to a honey and bee farm.  While observing and counting the various crops and animals on the farm, the students also learn about the intriguing and important work of bees.

If you're in the mood for nonfiction:

The Scientists in the Field series has to be at the top of every fan of children's nonfiction lists (the official website is quite cool as well).  I have not read one book in that series that failed to impress, engage, and enlighten me. It's always a good day when a new entry is published (they're currently researching crows in New Caledonia!) The Hive Detectives: Chronicles of a Honey Bee Catastrophe features the quest to discover why Dave Hackenberg's bee colonies have vanished, and what bee scientists and beekeepers are doing to save honey bees.

Younger readers can be directed to Anne Rockwell's Honey in a Hive and Gail Gibbons's The Honey Makers, which present information about bee culture in simple yet fact-filled nonfiction picture books.

We have many resources for adults interested in bees and beekeeping.

Laline Paull's The Bees has been on my to-be-read adult fiction list ever since I heard it described as "The Hunger Games, but with bees."

If you're a Fauquier County Public Library patron (or staff member!) and you haven't subscribed to Wowbrary yet, you are missing out! I will send my September order in the upcoming last weeks of August (how did THAT happen?), and it is FILLED with amazing-sounding titles. I am having a tough time deciding what I need to order now, and what can wait (in addition to ordering fall-themed books and refreshing the board books collection! Eeek!). Wowbrary also includes the latest adult fiction and nonfiction on order, as well as recently ordered DVDs, CDs, and ebook/eaudio additions.

Jennifer Schultz, Youth Services Librarian, Fauquier County Public Library

To learn more about Fauquier County Public Library's collectionevents, and programs, visit us on FacebookTwitter (Kiddosphere's feed is here), or on our website.

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