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The Bee Frequency

This article is from Issue The Bee Frequency - Vol. 1 No. 23.

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Welcome Section

Note to Educators

What is a Pollinator Garden?

Bee Frequency FACTivity

Reflection Section Answer Guide

Bee Frequency Make A Phrase 

Bee Frequency Eye Challenge

Bee Frequency Education Standards

Bee Frequency Natural Inquirer Connections & Web Resources

Bee Frequency Lazy Lawn Mower Alert Sign

Bee Frequency Bee Proud Lawn Sign

Meet the scientists that contributed to this article:

"Thinking About Science Themes" covered in this article:
Scientists use many different tools and technologies to complete research. They are increasingly using high-tech, computer-based instruments that require special knowledge or skills. However, not all scientific endeavors require high-tech equipment. Many sciences still use the same technologies that scientists used many years ago. For instance, scientists studying chemistry may still use beakers. Scientists have used beakers in chemistry since the 1800s, and modern beakers are similar to the ones used then. Scientists may also use their creativity to find simple items at the grocery store that they can use for experiments. In this study, the scientists evaluated how mowing lawns affects bees. The easiest way to capture and learn about bees is to use inexpensive, disposable plastic bowls painted with bright, fluorescent colors that make the bowls resemble flowers. Soapy water inside the bowls prevented the bees from flying away before the scientists could identify and count them. The scientific process requires a great deal of creativity. As you read this study, think about a question you want to investigate using the scientific process. What tools or technologies could you use to test your question?
Specific "Thinking About Science" Themes:
  • Characteristics of Scientists
  • The Scientific Process

"Thinking About Environmental Themes" covered in this article:
Green, grassy lawns cover a large portion of the United States (figure 6). The scientists in this study found that grass lawns cover more than 400 million acres in the United States. Thatís an area approximately equivalent to the State of Alaska, the largest State in the United States. You may see lawns at homes, at schools, near businesses, in parks, and at golf courses. Lawns can be easy to maintain, attractive, and provide a good place to play or picnic. Chemical-free lawns can also be good for the environment. For instance, lawns can slow stormwater runoff, store carbon, and lower temperatures caused by the urban heat island effect. These benefits are especially important in urban and suburban areas with limited green space. While lawns do have benefits, the scientists knew that most lawns are not an ideal habitat for many plants and animals. Keeping lawns looking good often requires chemical treatments that can pollute waterways and can also kill some pollinators. Lawns also require frequent mowing to maintain a tidy look. In fact, there are even some places in the United States where the law requires mowing! While mowing makes a lawn look neat, scientists know that frequent mowing can make it difficult for native plants and animals to survive (figures 7a, 7b, and 7c).
Specific "Thinking About the Environment" Themes:
  • Urban heat island effect

NSE Standards covered in this article:
  • Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry (A)
  • History of science (G)
  • Nature of science (G)
  • Populations and ecosystems (C)
  • Regulation and behavior (C)
  • Science as a human endeavor (G)
  • Structure and function in living systems (C)
  • Understandings about scientific inquiry (A)