I have a neighbor, Cheri. She’s lovely. We’ve chatted, traded eggs for honey, talked about gardening, and toured each other’s projects. Cheri teaches kindergarten. About a year ago, when I told her I had bees, her face lit up, and she asked if I would be willing to come to her class.
Of coooourse I would!
Fast forward a year, and today was the day. I was lucky enough to score an observation hive from a friend at my bee club (Shout out to Mike – Thanks, Mike!). He also has some great photos, circa 1978, that still work great.
Holy cow. Kindergarten.
Those kids are little. And squirmy. And have the attention span of gnats. And Cheri? Their teacher? Wow.
The patience it would take, with eyes in the back of her head, anticipating what 40 little hands, and 40 little eyeballs, and 40 little arms are doing at every minute of the day. No WONDER kindergarten is only about 3 hours long!
Today, when I came to talk about bees, a couple of other classes came in. So we had 60 little squirmers. And three teachers, and student teachers, and aides. 10 adults: 60 kids. Not a bad ratio. These women were so gifted at being calm, calm, calm.
If I had been there in anything resembling a position of authority, I would have blown a gasket. Better that I taught 12th grade.
After I talked for a few minutes, and the kids started to get restless, the women-in-charge broke them into groups so they could rotate through stations. One group went out to learn a bee song, two groups were coloring, one group came to see the hive up close, and the last was looking at my tools and the pictures. Five minutes, and they’d rotate. When they came to my station, they had an opportunity to ask me questions directly. And we were lucky – we had hatching bees today. Coolness.
At one point, there was a little boy who was sort of laying on the table, staring at the bees. His group rotated to the next station, and he started to leave, but then came back. Eventually, he said, ” I think I love them.”
I totally get it, little dude.