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Learning about bees in French: vocabulary for kids

Learning about bees in French

We love going for nature walks, and during our recent strolls, my toddler began asking many questions about the bees she noticed buzzing around the colourful spring flowers in our neighbourhood. If you also have a little inquisitive kiddo asking you about these industrious creatures, you’ll find this Learning about bees in French blog post useful in introducing new vocabulary and concepts to your toddler.

Related: French spring book: Pete the Cat and the Cool Caterpillar

An introduction to bees in French

Bee – abeille (feminine)

The bee is an insect.

L’abeille est un insecte.

Related: Kids’ song: La fourmi m’a piqué la main – insects in French

Beehive – ruche (feminine)

The bees’ house is called a beehive.

La maison des abeilles s’appelle une ruche.

Colony – colonie (feminine)

All the bees that live together in a hive form a colony.

Toutes les abeilles qui vivent ensemble dans une ruche forment une colonie.

The queen – la reine (feminine)

The queen bee lays eggs.

La reine des abeilles pond des œufs.

Worker bees – les ouvrières (feminine)

The worker bees take care of the colony and collect nectar from flowers.

Les ouvrières s’occupent de la colonie et butinent des fleurs.

Nectar – nectar (masculine)

Nectar is a sweet liquid that bees collect from the bottom of flowers.

Le nectar est un liquide sucré que les abeilles récoltent au fond des fleurs.

Honey – miel (masculine)

Bees transform nectar into honey.

Les abeilles transforment le nectar en miel.

Beekeeper – apiculteur (masculine), apicultrice (feminine)


Beekeepers care for the colonies and beehives and harvest honey.

Les apiculteurs s’occupent des colonies et des ruches et récoltent le miel.

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The anatomy of a bee in French

Wing – aile (feminine)

Abdomen – abdomen (masculine)

Stripe – rayure (feminine)

Stinger – dart (masculine)

Tongue (proboscis) – trompe (feminine)

Antenna – antenne (feminine)

Books about bees in French

French song for kids: Maya l’abeille, with lyrics and English translation

Here’s a fun French song for kids about a bee named Maya and a bear named Winnie. It’s short, repetitive and easy to sing along to.

Maya, Maya l’abeille
Winnie, Winnie l’ourson
Attention, au bout de 3, une abeille te piquera
A la une
A la 2
A la 3
Maya, Maya the bee
Winnie, Winnie the Pooh
Be careful, after 3, a bee will sting you
At 1
At 2
At 3

And if you like poetry, check out this audio recording of L’Abeille De Paul Valéry.

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