I'm not really sure where the inspiration came from for these homemade pool noodle bees, but boy oh boy, have J and K enjoyed playing with these! They are simple to make and a great way to do some imaginative play with bugs.
To make the pool noodle bees, I cut a 4-5" chunk off of a yellow pool noodle. Using a permanent black marker, I then drew some black stripes on the bee's body. I also drew a face on one end of the pool noodle. The wings were made by twisting white pipe cleaners into wing shapes. The pipe cleaners can then easily be pushed into the pool noodle.
J and K enjoyed flying the pool noodle bees around, happily making buzzing sounds. However, I also came up with a flying bee activity, which J was obsessed with.
I tied a string to the door handle at the top of our basement stairs. I slid the bee onto the string and then held onto the other end. I sat a few feet away from the bottom of the stairs, giving the string a nice slope for the bee to come "flying" down.
J let the bee fly down the string on its own, giggling as it came zooming towards me. He also helped it fly at a more leisurely pace by holding onto the bee while climbing up and down the stairs.
J has spent a lot of time playing with this flying bee activity, while K prefers to just fly his around, engaging in some imaginative play.
Looking for more bug and bee activities? Check out the Bugs by the Number Sensory Bin or the Buzz Basket.