The nurse stroked his wings and gave him some bee bread to eat,
and then she said: "I believe I shall have to name you Busy- Wings,
because you love to work, and wanted some to do just the minute you
got out of your cradle. What kind of work would you like to do? —
nurse the babies or clean up or fan in fresh air or be a soldier to take
care of the Queen, or gather nectar for honey and wax or pollen dust
for the bee bread ?"
And Busy-Wings thought a minute and then he said — you guess
254 LITTLE FOLKS' LAND
what he said — he said, "I would rather go out among the flowers and
gather nectar and pollen to make bee bread for the babies."
"Very well," said the nurse, "you may begin right now! Slip
through that little outside door there and you will be in the yard. You
will find some tiny baskets on your hind legs to put the pollen dust in,
and the little pocket by your throat is for the nectar juice. Be sure
you bring the things right to me, when you come in. I need some
very fresh for the youngest baby; hurry, and be sure to be kind to the
flowers, and also carry some pollen dust for them, from flower to
"All right," said little Busy-Wings, and then he slipped through
the door of the hive, very happy because he was going away to work.
When he first got outside, though, he almost forgot to work, he was
so busy looking at things, for you must remember he had never seen the
beautiful outside world before, and as he looked he kept saying over
"Oh, how pretty,
' Pretty, pretty, pretty
Oh, how pretty
Then he smelled something very sweet, and he saw many bright
colors, and Busy-Wings said, "Those must be the flowers the nurse
told me about, and I will get to work."
So he •bobbed into the red nasturtium and got some nectar juice
and then he bobbed into a pink phlox and got some nectar, and then
he bobbed to the clover bed and got some more nectar, and he bobbed
to the morning-glories and got pollen dust, and then he bobbed to the
petunias and got some pollen dust, and he got some more from the
daisies. Then when he had filled his baskets quite full of pollen dust
and had filled his pocket full of nectar juice, he flew quickly back to the
hive and carried it to the nurse, as she had told him.
"Let me see," said the nurse, "pocket and baskets all full! Why,
you have been a real busy little bee. But let me taste it before I give
it to the babies, to be sure it is all right." And when she had tasted
some — a wee little bit — right on the very end of her tongue, why, she
made a most dreadful face, and screwed up her mouth and said, "Per-
fectly h-o-r-r-i-d! My dear, it tastes like all kinds of flowers mixed
LITTLE FOLKS' LAND 255
up together! Where did you get it? I could never give this to the
And Busy-Wings said, "Why, I got it out of the flowers. I went
to the nasturtiums and to the phlox and to the dasies and to the clover,
And then the nurse threw back her head and laughed and laughed ;
she could not help it, and she said, "Why, of course, the honey tastes
bitter, my dear! It was all my fault, though, and I should have told
30U to go only to one kind of flower each trip — if you go to the clover
blossoms first, don't gather nectar juice from any other flowers but
clovers, until you come to the hive and empty your sack. Then the next
trip you may choose some other flower."
"Oh, yes," said Busy-Wings, nodding his head, "I know now.
Of course, it isn't best to mix up so many kinds of nectar; I'll try
"That is the way," said the nurse, "go empty that out in the yard,
and bring me some more for the babies, and when you come back we
will see if I can guess where you got it."
Busy-Wings thought that would be great fun ; he thought he
could fool the nurse, and she couldn't tell ivhere he got his nectar juice,
so he flew quickly away and emptied his pocket and basket. He was
just wondering which flower to go to, when he saw little Rosy Clover-
Blossom-Boy, and his face looked so fresh and clean, Busy-Wings flew
right straight down to him, and got some of the sweetest nectar juice, and
then he flew around to the other clovers on the bed, and filled his
pocket right full, and hurried back to the nurse.
"Now," said Busy-Wings, "guess where I got it?"
"All right," laughed the nurse; "wait until I taste it." So she
took some on the end of her tongue and tasted and tasted, and then
she said, "Perfect-ly d-e-1-i-c-i-o-u-s ! It came from the clover blos-
soms! Just the very thing for the babies!"
Then Busy- Wings laughed and laughed — he was so surprised that
the nurse could tell where he had gotten it, and he was so very glad,
too, that it was perfectly delicious. Then the nurse helped him empty
his pocket and baskets, and Busy-Wings watched while she mixed honey
and pollen dust, and made the bee-bread for the babies.
"Now, I think I shall go and get another kind," said Busy- Wings;
"I want to see if you can guess again."
256 LITTLE FOLKS' LAND
So he did; and he chose the petunias that trip, and Joe-Boy saw
him flitting from one petunia to another, singing,
"Oh, how pretty.
Pretty, pretty, pretty,
Oh, how pretty,
Busy-Wings in Prison
^(\ T THO will go and bring me my breakfast?" said the young
Queen, early one morning. "I wish it fresh from the
flowers, while the dew fairies are washing their faces."
"I! I! I!" said little Busy- Wings, "I will go and bring it! I
can fly very swiftly!"
"Very well," said the Queen, "I will thank you, but remember, I
do not like mixed honey — it does not taste so well."
But of course, you know Busy- Wings better than that — he would
not bring his dear Mother Queen mixed up honey, because he loved her
so. Glad to work for her, he hurried away, and little Miss Pansy
and Violet Blue and Johnny-Jump-Up heard him buzzing by the
porch as he sang his little song:
"Oh, how pretty.
Pretty, pretty, pretty.
Oh, how pretty,
But he did not stop as he passed ; only nodding "Good morning"
as he flitted about the morning-glory vines. He knew honey made
from their nectar juice was very delicate and sweet — just the thing for
the Queen's breakfast. So he buzzed in and out among the fresh
morning-glories — first the blue and then the pink and then the white —
until he had his nectar pocket almost full. There was one large morn-
ing-glory bluer than any of the others, and Busy- Wings said, "I'll just
fly in there before I go, and get the last sip, and then I will hurry
home with the Queen's breakfast."
And so he did, but only think, just as he started to fly out, the
blue morning-glory shut up tight, and there was Busy- Wings, shut up
LITTLE FOLKS' LAND 257
in a blue bag, and though he tried and tried, he could not get out, and
even got one of his legs hitched, too — and that was worse than everl
What should he do? Now, if you were tied up in a little blue bag and
couldn't get out, what would you do? Would you cry? Busy-Wings
did not cry, but oh! he felt most dreadful. He knew his Mother Queen
was waiting for her breakfast that very minute and wondering what
had become of him. He was afraid she would think he was a lazy bee,
and you would not like any one to think you were lazy, I know; so
little Busy- Wings worried and worried because he could not get out.
The sun grew warmer and warmer, and I am sure it was almost dinner
time when he heard the kindergarten teacher and the children coming
around the walk by the porch. They were looking to see how the
morning-glories were coming along with their seed pockets, and Char-
lotte Anne put her hand right on the very blue morning-glory that
Busy- Wings was locked up in, and he was buzzing away inside, calling
"Please, oh, please, let me out.
Buzz, buzz, buzz!
Won't somebody please let me out?
Buzz, buzz, buzz!"
"Ouch!" said Charlotte Anne, "somebody's locked up in this blue
morning-glory! It might bite, too."
"Why, that sounds like a little bee," said the kindergarten teacher.
"Sure enough, he is locked up in this blue morning-glory! I guess he
did not know that morning-glories shut up their doors as soon as the
sun begins to get hot. Poor little fellow, we will turn him out."
So the next thing Busy-Wings knew, somebody's kind hand turned
him loose, and you know he was happy! Away he sailed home, just
as quickly as he could go, and when the nurse saw him she said, "Why,
Busy-Wings, where have you been? The Queen waited and waited for
her breakfast and when you did not come she had to send another little
bee off for her fresh nectar. Did you forget and stop to play?"
"No," said Busy-Wings, "I do not play when I am working. I
had gathered the Queen's nectar, and went into a big blue morning-
glory for the last sip, when the morning-glory shut up tight and I
just couldn't get out, though I tried ever so hard. But just now, while
I was buzzing softly, asking some one to let me out, I heard some chil-
258 LITTLE FOLKS' LAND
dren talking, and they came to where I was, and then I guess one of
them turned me out, and, and, and "
"You flew home as fast as you could!" said the nurse, with a merry
laugh. The Queen heard everything Busy- Wings said, and she thought
it was very funny, and she laughed, too, and then she said: "I shall
have to excuse you this time, Busy- Wings, and I guess next time you
will be more careful about going into flowers that shut you up in a
bag. Come, let me see if you have any nectar left in your pocket for
me — if it didn't get here in time for breakfast, maybe it will do for
And it did, too, for when the Queen tasted it she said, "Thank
you, my dear; it is perfectly delicious!" You know that pleased Busy-
Busy-Wings' Color Lesson
^^^""^11-0!" said Joe-Boy the next morning, as he stood by the
kindergarten window, "here is that very same little bee that was
locked up yesterday in the blue morning-glory. I do believe
"Yes," said the kindergarten teacher, "he certainly does look like
that bee. He has come to see our rose-geranium — such a busy little
fellow he seems to be — I guess his name is Busy- Wings. Anyway, we
will claim him for our own, and have him for a pet — maybe he will
come to see us every day."
I do not know whether Busy- Wings heard what the kindergarten
teacher said or not, but I know that he seemed to like the rose-geranium
a great deal, and came to the window every morning to see it.
The children learned to love him very much, and said: "See,
Busy- Wings has started to kindergarten ; he comes every morning, just
as we do."
"Well," said the kindergarten teacher, "if Busy-Wings has really
started to kindergarten, and is coming every morning, I suppose he
would like to learn something. Let us begin now and give him some
color lessons — I am sure that is a very beautiful thing to learn about.
What color shall we teach him first?"
"Red ! Red !" said Joe-Boy, because he remembered that was the
first color he had learned. So the kindergarten teacher got a pretty
LITTLE FOLKS' LAND 259
piece of red glass, and put a drop of sugar water on it, and then placed
the glass in the window where Busy-Wings would find it. By and by
Busy-Wings came buzzing by and as soon as he saw the bright red
color, he stopped, and crawled up on the glass and tasted the sugar
water, and he liked it so well, why, he put it all in his honey pocket
and took it home to the Queen. And when the Queen tasted it she
liked it, too, and she said, "Where did you get it — not out of flowers?"
"No," said Busy-Wings, "I did not get it out of any flower; I
found it on a red spot in the kindergarten window."
"Go and bring me some more," said the Queen; "it is nice."
So Busy-Wings hurried back to the window and lit right straight
on the red glass, and there he found another drop of sugar water wait-
ing for him. While he was filling up his honey pocket, the children
were peeping at him, and they laughed so merrily, and said, "Busy-
Wings knows red ! He knows red ! because he came right back to the
red glass for his drop of sugar water."
"Tomorrow," said the kindergarten teacher, "we will teach him
£ harder lesson; we will teach him a new color, and see if he remembers
So, the next day, when the children came, they found the red
glass washed clean, in the window, and close by was a blue glass, and
on this blue glass there was a drop of fresh sugar water.
"We are going to April-fool Busy-Wings today," said the chil-
dren. "Maj^be we will and maybe won't," said the kindergarten
teacher; "we will watch and see which glass he comes to this morning."
And while they were talking about it, who should come sailing
by but Busy-Wings. When he started out to work, the very first thing
he thought about was the nice sugar water he had found before on the
red spot, and he wanted some more; so when he flew up to the window,
guess where he lit? On the red glass! You should have heard those
children clap! They were so proud of Busy- Wings because he remem-
bered red. But Busy-Wings did not understand it because there was
not any drop of sugar water waiting for him.
"Dear me," he said, "I am sure I found it on this very red spot
yesterday — why isn't there any here now?"
And he crawled all over the glass and looked and looked, and
then he crawled over on the blue glass, and there he found the nice
drop of sugar water. He tasted it again, and thought it was so good
260 LITTLE FOLKS' LAND
he would carry ft to the Queen, so he filled up his honey pocket and
flew to the hive. When the Queen tasted it, she said, "It is very, very
good! You must have gotten it from the same red spot you saw yes-
"No," said Busy-Wings, "I did not get it from the red spot, but I
went there to find it, and there wasn't any. So I found this on another
spot — a blue spot — and it tastes just like the other."
"I like it very much," said the Queen; "go and bring me some
The children were watching for Busy- Wings; they wanted to see
if he would go first to the red glass or if he would remember about the
blue glass, and what do you guess? Why, he flew right straight to the
blue glass, sure enough, and the kindergarten teacher said, "You see?
Busy- Wings has really learned to tell blue from red! We are very
proud of our little kindergarten bee. Next week we must teach him
orange and yellow and green and violet — then Busy-Wings will know
all of the rain-bow colors — and we will be very proud of him."
And while they were talking about him. Busy- Wings kept filling
his honey pocket for the Queen, singing softly to himself:
"Oh, how pretty.
Pretty, pretty, pretty,
Oh, how pretty,
Program for Twenty-first Week — Life History of the Bee
.The Queen of the Bees
Circle talk, songs and games: What else, besides butterflies and moths,
fly around the flowers for nectar juice? Do you know what the
bees do with their nectar? Relate story.
Song and game: "Busy Bees."
Gift : Fifth. A third to each child ; make hives and arrange in group.
Occupation: Fold, cut and paste, a bee-hive. Draw bees flying near.
LITTLE FOLKS' LAND 261
The Queen's Eggs
Circle talk, songs and gamess Do you think the Queen bee did
any work? Shall I tell you what kind of work she did? Relate
Song and game: "Bees." Let the Queen bee remain in the hive, while
the others gather nectar and pollen for baby bees.
Gift: Modeling cells for eggs. Use a flat piece of clay, and hexagonal
pencil or stick to illustrate honey cells.
Occupation: Sewing. Outline hexagon. Large holes. Single zephyr.
Circle talk, songs and games: Have you watched bees gathering nectar?
Do they go to many kinds of flowers, one directly after the other?
Let us all watch closely and find out. Relate story.
Game: "Bees." In which the emphasis is placed on the activity of
bees going to one kind of flower each trip.
Gift: Modeling bees (enlarged) ; the Queen, worker, drone. Illus-
trate difference in form.
Occupation: Drawing. A picture of Busy- Wings, in a garden of
Busy-Wings in Prison
Circle talk, songs and games: Show morning-glories, both open and
closed. When do morning-glories close? Let us watch ours and
Game: A play in which Busy-Wings is caught in the morning-glory.
Gift: Tablets, picture flowers which close and some which do not.
Occupation: Cutting or color work. Morning-glory.
Busy-Wings' Color Lesson
Circle talk, songs and games: You remember who let Busy- Wings out
of prison, don't you? Guess where he went the next morning.
262 LITTLE FOLKS' LAND
He went to the kindergarten to get nectar from the rose-geranium
growing in the window. When the children saw him, they thought
they would teach him about colors, and I will tell you about it.
Song and game: "Bees."
Gift: Fifth. Build kindergarten with window sill, where the gera-
nium grew. Use second gift, bead cylinders, for pots.
Occupation: Modeling, flower pots.
Twenty-second Week — Life History of Ants
WHEN Busy-Wings flew out of the hive to go to work one
morning, he saw a long, long string of tiny red ants, march-
ing in a row, one behind the other. There were mother
ants and father ants and nurse ants and soldier ants and other work-
"Where are you going, in such a long line?" asked Busy-Wings.
"We are hunting a new home," said one of the soldier ants. "We
had a beautiful home out in the woods, but yesterday a little boy poured
a whole dipperful of water right down our front door, and it ran all
over the halls and into the pantry and nursery and ruined our eggs
and drowned our babies, and we just got out in time to save our lives."
"My, my, my," said Busy- Wings, "I didn't know little boys ever
did that kind of thing — I am very sure the little hoys in this yard
wouldn't. Why don't you dig your home over there by the edge of the
LITTLE FOLKS' LAND 263
clover bed ? But I hope you will never crawl up into our hive, because
you are so little you might get mixed up in our honey."
"Oh, we wouldn't do that," said the ants. "So we will go to work
right now, and make our home before it rains — we ants do not like to
Then the little ants began to dig a tiny, round hole in the ground ;
and one little ant dug out a grain of sand, and another little ant dug
out a grain of sand, and another little ant dug out a grain of sand,
and another little ant dug out a grain of sand, and another little ant
dug out a grain of sand, and another little ant dug out a grain of sand,
and another little ant dug out a grain of sand ! And so they worked
all day long, and when night came they had a very nice little round
door, that led into a narrow winding hall. The next morning Busy-
Wings saw them hard at work again, digging out little grains of sand,
and they told him they were making the pantry, then, to store away
cake crumbs and biscuit crumbs and nut crumbs and grains of sugar,
and other nice things to eat during the cold winter time when the
frost and snow were on the ground.
"Well, sir!" said Busy- Wings, "that is just the way the bees do,
because there are no flowers in the winter time to give us nectar juice
for our honey."
When the ants finished their pantry, then they began digging out
bed-rooms for the big ants to sleep in, and last of all, they dug out a
nice big room for the nursery, where the baby ants were to stay, and
then they told Busy- Wings they were ready to begin housekeeping.
"Why, why," said Busy-Wings, "your little round door is so
very small, I'm afraid I can never come down to see your babies,
because I couldn't squeeze through such a tiny door, you know."
"Our door is plenty large enough for little people like us," said the
ants; "but when you come to see us, just buzz at the door and we will
hear and come out."
Now in Busy-Wings' house there was only one Queen Mother
to lay eggs, you know, but in the ants' home there were many, many
little mothers to lay eggs, and many, many little ant babies that hatched
out of the eggs — so many babies, that the red ants said, "We shall have
to send off and get us some little black servants to help us take care of
our babies and home."
So ten of the big, red soldier ants marched away, and when they
264 LITTLE FOLKS' LAND
Came back each one brought a little black baby ant, and then they went
back and brought some more until they had a great many; and the
other red ants fed the little black babies every day, until they were
grown up, and able to go out and help them gather crumbs, and clean
up and nurse the babies and keep house, and milk the cows — but I
must tell you about that later. One of the little black servants was
named Bright Eyes — the dearest little black ant that ever was — and
the red ants loved her very much, because she was such a bright, good
little servant, and always tried to do her best. It was Bright-Eyes
who always watched closely for the tiny eggs as soon as the red ant
mothers laid them; and quickly picking up the wee, wee, wee eggs
she would carry them to the nursery and watch over them until the
little ant babies hatched out. Then she and the other nurses would
carry the babies up through the little round door, to get the sunshine
and fresh air — which made them grow so fast. But nursing the babies
was not all that Bright-Eyes did — that was only one thing — all day
Jong she was kept busy waiting on the red ants, and they would say,
"Bright- Eyes, won't you do this?" and "Bright-Eyes, won't you do
that?" and "Bright- Eyes, won't you do the other thing?" until her
busy feet were kept going from morning until night. Sometimes she
would be out all day long hunting something good for the red ants to
eat, and if she found a crumb of cake that some little child had dropped,
why, she did not eat it herself, but tugged and tugged and tugged,
until she got it through the little round door, and down the long
winding halls, and to the red ants' pantry, where she put it away for
their dinner. One day while Bright-Eyes was out she found a piece of
candy — quite a big piece — too large for Bright-Eyes to carry in by
herself, and what do you suppose she did ? She hurried home and told
the red ants about it, and they came out to see — another and another
and another — and they all gathered round the piece of candy and broke
it into many tiny little pieces, and then Bright-Eyes took a piece ever
so much bigger than she was, and each one of the other ants took up
a piece, and away they carried it off to their pantry, to keep for the
winter time. Now, don't you think Bright- Eyes was a dear little
servant ? '
LITTLE FOLKS' LAND 265
The Red Ants' Cows
I MUSTN'T forget to tell you how Bright-Eyes milked the cows —
not truly, truly cows like what we have, of course, with great big
horns — but ant cows, I mean, tiny little green cows that you may
find any day, crawling on the rose bushes and sucking nectar from
their blossoms. Bright-Eyes found a rosebush one day with ever so
many green cows on it, and when she told the red ants about it, they
said, "How fine! Just the thing for the babies! We found those cows,
so we will have them for our very own ; the rosebush shall be our cow
pasture, and we will keep some of our soldier ants there to watch it,
and keep other ants from milking our cows."
So, ever after that, they called the rosebush their cow pasture, and
each day they sent Bright-Eyes out to milk the little green cows — only
they did not call it milk; they called it honey-dew — and the red ants
and their babies thought there was nothing in the world quite so nice
as honey-dew from their own little green cows. When Bright-Eyes
milked she would go up to one of the little cows and pat it gently on
the head and stroke its sides, and the little cow was always glad to
give her a drop of sweet honey-dew. Then she would go to another
little cow, and do the same thing over again, and that little cow
would give her "a drop of honey-dew, too, and so on and on she would
go until she had milked all the cows. Then Bright-Eyes would hurry
'home, through the little round hole in the ground, and carry the sweet
honey-dew milk to the red ants and to the red ants' wee, wee babies.
One morning while Bright-Eyes was milking the cows, though, a
big brown ant crawled up the stem of the rosebush and began milking
the cows. And Bright-Eyes said, "Please do not milk our cows; this