Learning to Give, Philanthropy education resources that teach giving and civic engagement

Buzzing is BEE-lieving
Unit of 4 lessons

Unit Overview:

 Focus Question: In what ways do students positively or negatively affect their community?

Unit Purpose:

The concepts of self-esteem, respect, philanthropy and community involvement are explored through song, science, books, art, and interaction with another "community." The book Buzzy the Bumblebee teaches about the value of a strong community.

Unit Objectives:

The learner will:

  • identify examples of talk that hurts other people.
  • illustrate Buzzy the Bumblebee’s feelings at various points in the story.
  • sing the "Buzzy the Bumblebee" song.
  • construct a Buzzy headband using a pattern.
  • identify the following common insects: dragonfly, bee, grasshopper, ant and fly.
  • use tally marks to record data.
  • record the number of insects they see in a familiar environment.
  • perform the "Buzzy the Bumblebee" song.
  • read a favorite book with a buddy from the other group.
  • discuss things he/she and his/her buddies are good at.
  • create thank-you note or poster.
  • reflect on service-learning experience through class discussion.
  • create a "community web" by using respectful, positive, uplifting comments.
  • identify how the break down of the "web" can happen through negative comments.
  • reflect upon feelings through class discussion.

Service Experience:

Although lessons in this unit contain service project examples, decisions about service plans and implementation should be made by students, as age appropriate.

Students establish a relationship with a group outside their classroom with whom they share their message of "believe in yourself." They make a presentation, read with a buddy from the other group, and talk about what they are each good at. Extend the relationship by planning some ongoing activities.

Unit Assessment:

Assessment is made through observation of participation in discussion and activities.

School/Home Connection:

  • "Copy and Paste" Class/School Newsletter Information Insert: What is the buzz in Room X? A bee named Buzzy has inspired our classroom to work together to be a positive community full of compliments and kind actions. We are reading and responding to a story in which a bee learns to believe in himself. We are passing around positive BEE-haviors to our classmates and BEE-lieving in our possibilities! Then we are taking our positive message on the road as we partner with another community and partner up for some buzzing fun. We are also exploring the world of insects as we tally up the insects in our school and home environments. You won’t BEE-lieve the time we are having!

  • Lesson One: What’s All the Buzz About? - At home, the students tell their families about Buzzy and talk about how his family supported him. As a family, come up with one thing you can do to help a family member believe in him/herself. See Lesson One, Attachment Three: Bee-lieving in Yourself.  The student may practice the "Buzzy the Bumblebee" song at home. Send home the lyrics. See Lesson One, Attachment Two: Buzzy the Bumblebee Song.

  • Lesson Two: Insect Investigation - Give each student a copy of Lesson Two, Attachment One: Insect Investigator to bring home. Give the instruction to record the insects they observe at home. They work with a parent or guardian to add up their tally marks for each insect. The next day, they bring the record sheet back to school in order to compare and contrast the number of insects found at school versus at home.

  • Lesson Three: Buzzing Into the Community - Have students write about their service learning experience in the form of a letter to parents, relatives or friends at home.

Notes for Teaching:

BEE sure to:

  • Use this lesson when insects are abundant in your environment.
  • Introduce philanthropy within other lessons preceding this unit.

State Curriculum and Philanthropy Theme Frameworks:

See individual lessons for benchmark detail.

Lessons Developed By:

Alicia Legato
Pre-service Teacher
Grand Valley State University

Jennifer Kolodziej
Pre-service Teacher
Grand Valley State University

Jennifer Peterson
Jenison Public Schools
Jenison Early Childhood Development Center
800 Connie
Jenison, MI 49428

Julie Fuhrmann
Pre-service Teacher
Grand Valley State University

Megan Napper
Pre-service Teacher
Grand Valley State University

Stacey Nichol
Coopersville Public Schools
Coopersville West Elementary
198 East Street
Coopersville, MI 49404

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