First-graders at Daniel Warren Elementary School, who have been studying about insects as part of their science curriculum, welcomed visitors from the Rye Nature Center to their school for a lesson on bees.

As part of the lesson, the students learned about the life cycle of a honeybee family and its metamorphosis from an egg, to a larva, pupa and an adult bee. They also discussed the bees’ purpose in nature and the different adaptions they need to survive. During the hands-on learning experience, the students got to taste local honey and plant marigolds and snapdragons, which provide a source of food to bees.

“It makes the students feel like they are part of nature, part of the whole cycle and they helped it along by planting flowers,” teacher Madeleine Biegen said. “Hands-on science is a really important part of their learning.”

The first-graders will continue to study insects when they welcome butterfly eggs to their classrooms to observe their transformation into a caterpillar, chrysalis and eventually a butterfly. When the students are outside in the garden during recess, Biegen said they will investigate how the flowers they planted attract butterflies and bees.

The Rye Nature Center’s visit was generously funded by the PTSA.