In celebration of Pollination Week, June 18-24, I wanted to give everyone a few ideas for a great Urban Science Adventure Activity you can do this weekend. Today, June 21st is also Summer Learning Day.

Join communities across the country in celebrating the importance of summer learning. Summer Learning Day is widely supported by educators, summer programs and community leaders.

And here is a perfect opportunity do a two-fer: learn about pollination. How cool is this? Thanks to technology and the awesomeness that is Citizen Science, you, you, and you can make some very important (and much needed) scientific observations on plants and pollinators. And it doesn't matter where you live or how old you are. All you need is a digital camera, internet connection and little patience to sit still and watch closely. Here are my three favorite Pollination Projects!

1. Bee Hunt

Using digital photography to record and study the interactions between plants and pollinators the data collected will help provide a better understanding of pollinators' importance in growing food and maintaining healthy natural ecosystems. There's no fee to participate and anyone who lives anywhere there are pollinators can participate.

bee pollinating wild bergamot

2. The Great Pollinator Project

By participating through observation and data gathering, you enable a single researcher or a small team to gather much more data over a much larger geographic area. There are ongoing Bee Watchers Projects in the New York City region and the Great Sunflower Project happening all over the world.

wild sunflower

3. Build a Pollinators Garden

Your Garden Show has a host of resources to help you turn your backyard, porch, garden or window planter in to pollination party zone. They even have a list of Calibration Plants - everyday plants like dandelions, that are easy to identify and are very important to pollinating insects.

Dandelion being pollinated

To do list

  • Check out these three projects. Read about their requirements.
  • Figure out which one you would like to do with your friends and family this weekend.
  • Make the observations and report back.
  • Finally, let me know what you did. Share pictures if you like.

Have fun!