People, Plants and Pollinators (Gr. 3+)

Last updated on
Monday, September 17th, 2018
Program Description

This is a hands-on educational adventure all about pollinators and their habitat. 

People, Plants and Pollinators brings the fascinating world of pollinators to life, equipping learners with both scientific knowledge and direct skills to make a tangible difference.

Students will learn practical skills to encourage healthy populations of pollinators in their communities. Participants will:

  • get to know both native and introduced pollinators such as honeybees; 
  • become familiar with the habitat needs of these species; 
  • learn how to help create conditions that are critical for pollinator success; 
  • receive take-home materials that continue learning in their own communities. 

The program takes place in the Galiano Conservancy Forest Garden at the Millard Learning Centre. The Forest Garden hosts two honey bee hives. Program participants will learn first-hand about the colonies’ inner workings and ecology, while watching honey bees pollinate the Forest Garden. 

An Amazing Diversity

British Columbia has over 450 native bee species, and the Southern Gulf Islands are home to a number of bees and other native pollinators. This program will also look beyond the “usual suspects” and engage learners about orchard mason bees, leafcutter bees, carpenter bees, mining bees, plasterer bees, insects other than bees (e.g. butterflies, beetles, flies, wasps) and hummingbirds. This fascinating array of species is critical to pollination; many of them pollinate more species than honeybees do, and are adapted to thrive in natural habitats with little intervention from humans. This makes them a critical part of our ecosystems. Both the Galiano Conservancy Forest Garden and new Native Forage Forest are perfect outdoor learning environments to discover real examples of native pollinators, their foraging and their habits. 

In this program, participants will learn about which plants are good for pollinators, identifying native plants, as well as herbal and medicinal species. Students will help to plant these in the Galiano Community Forest Garden and new Native Forage Forest. They will learn about the blooming calendar to create habitat for pollinators year-round, and learn how to plant by colour to best attract a variety of different pollinators. 

Hands-on Experience

They will gain hands-on experience creating native bee habitat, and discover pollinator-friendly gardening techniques by installing Mason Bee houses at the Forest Garden and taking home instructions to make their own.

This new knowledge will go home with the participants so they can design or improve their gardens to better assist pollinator species.

As part of the program, students will construct take-home signs that announce their pollinator-friendly gardens, allowing students to spread their new awareness of different ways to encourage the health of native bee and pollinator populations. 

We will also install Pollinator Habitat signs from the the Galiano Community Forest Garden and Native Forage Forest to explain to visitors what is being done to encourage pollinators, and demonstrate how people can learn more about creating pollinator habitat in their own gardens and communities.

Program Outcomes

People Plants and Pollinators will…

  • Increase participants’ interest, awareness and knowledge of pollinators in BC, their biology, ecology, threats and importance to our ecosystems and food systems locally and globally; 
  • Provide participants with hands-on applicable skills in supporting pollinator success in their local communities; 
  • Enable students to apply their knowledge at home.

For elementary and highschool:

Big Ideas
  • Living things are diverse, can be grouped, and interact in their ecosystems.
  • All living things sense and respond to their environment.
  • Multicellular organisms have organ systems that enable them to survive and interact within their environment.
  • Multicellular organisms rely on internal systems to survive, reproduce, and interact with their environment.
  • Earth and its climate have changed over geological time.
  • Evolution by natural selection provides an explanation for the diversity and survival of living things.
  • Life processes are performed at the cellular level.
  • The biosphere, geosphere, hydrosphere, and atmosphere are interconnected, as matter cycles and energy flows through them.
  • Trip Details
    For Grades: 
    3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, Teachers Only
    Months Available: 
    Full Day minutes unless otherwise stated.
    Maximum Students: 
    Offered In French: 
    Fee Details
    Cost Per Student: 
    Cost Per Adult: 
    Fee Notes: 


    Minimum group size: 15 students, please contact us if you would like to bring a group smaller than this size. 

    Need a ride? Book our bus! Bus fees are roundtrip! Bus is bookable with any of our day and overnight programs. Our bus capacity is 54 children or 36 adults. Bringing a large group? Please contact us for more information on transportation options. 

    Need financial aid? Apply to our bursary fund here: 

    • Program Fee Bursary: For one-day programs we can provide up to a $12 bursary per student toward program fees. For multi-day programs, the amount we grant is based on the organization’s need, and may cover up to 30% of program costs.
    • Travel Bursary: We can provide a travel bursary for up to 100% of your bus transportation on Galiano Island.
    Additional Notes


    This program is offered on Galiano Island, British-Columbia.

    Galiano Island is located midway between Vancouver and Victoria in the beautiful Strait of Georgia. It is part of the Southern Gulf Islands and has a population of approximately 1000 people.

    As such, it is the perfect location for outdoor, environmental education. Galiano Island is easily accessible by ferry from Tsawwassen terminal on the mainland or from Swartz Bay terminal on Vancouver Island.

    For ferry times and reservations call BC Ferries toll free at 1-888-223-3779 or in Victoria at (250) 386-3431.