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Starting Flight of Pollen

can be confusing if you’re expecting to start a turn by rolling a dice! Because there isn’t one.
Instead, each round begins by turning over an element card. Here’s Shawn holding them up!
There’s a couple of ways, on this site, to help you begin
– you can post on the forum
– you can check in on our cheat-sheet (which I’m constantly updating)

Flight of Pollen Cheat-Sheet

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our native bees

Native bees come in three sizes. Small, very small and extremely small.

Last summer I was with my friend Gretchen at their community garden in North East Valley, Dunedin. Little black native bees were everywhere! I followed them as the sucked on flax petals (they were after nectar not pollen), and clustered around cabbage tree flowers.

Flighty and fly very fast, seldom settling on one flower for long.

As I observed our short-tongued native bees are generally better at pollinating native flowers, while the introduced honeybees and bumblebees were busy in other parts of the garden, pollinating the crop flowers.

The native bee is an important pollinator in Flight of Pollen, picking up and dropping off a load of three. In the game loads range from one (hoverfly) to eight (bat).

Aotearoa / New Zealand has 28 species of native bees. Most native bees are solitary. At the end of summer they dig holes in the ground, and there they lay a single egg in each cell. These eggs hatch in spring and feed on the nectar and pollen left for them, before emerging.

Quotes from Jay Iwasaki, a PhD student in the Departments of Botany and Zoology at the University of Otago.
In ‘New Zealand’s Smallest Bees’, Our Changing World, by Alison Ballance

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Taupo Library

JiL-doll. As I was when I designed Cloak of Protection. Made by Hadia Jane Penton

Taupo District Library. SATURDAY Oct 28, 1-3.30pm.
If you’re in the area, please come play both my New Zealand environmental board games with me.
This is part of the Playing in Paradise exhibition in the Niven Room, at the Taupo Musuem, running Saturday 27 October – Monday 4 December. On display are artworks from Jane Penton, Laura Sue Bailey, Kanai Cowell and some of my early paper works and bird images.

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Lifting off with Kapanui School

Katie & Emily (from Kapanui School) playing with me at the Mahara Gallery

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nearly five years ago Kapanui School students in Matt Wynne’s class helped make the how-to-play video for Cloak of Protection. In the meantime a strong bond has been formed between myself and Wellington Enviroschools.

So when Flight of Pollen was nearly finished I, along with the local Enviroschools facilitator Amanda Dobson, returned to Matt Wynne’s class to make another video.

Making a video was different this time because the game was still in development. Class sessions were held, and students practiced the game. But watching the video is also watching seven students learn and play. It is to observe teams become more strategic as they move up each of the four levels.

The video was filmed and edited Paul Britten-Morby, Kaost Graphics. As he knew the students they were very relaxed about being filmed. And the ending has a surprise twist where, at their suggestion, a rule-change to the game is allowed.

Then Flight of Pollen was launched at the Mahara Gallery on Saturday 2nd September. Once again Matt’s Kapanui students were present, this time time to demonstrate and teach the game. Here also, the videos were played for the first time.

The plan is that students from this class, using Nga Manu as a base, will also teach the game to students at other schools. So carrying Flight of Pollen along.

As Emily Warner said, “This was a really fun game to play and I enjoyed collecting berries a lot. Can’t wait till another game is made!”

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the hairiness of moths

Here, seen through a window, is a very hairy moth.

The bigger the moth, the more the hairs, the larger the load of pollen it carries from flower to flower.

Aoteaora/New Zealand is a land of moths, so in Flight of Pollen there’s three: large hebe looper; zebra lichen; and cabbage tree.

All pick up and drop off pollen during the night.

As a child, as the evenings darkened at Lake Wakitipu, we’d turn on the lights and lamps.  Then in would come giant moths who’d circle the light, never ceasing as long as the light was on.

Who knew they were essential pollinators!?

 

 

 

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Pollination Illumination

Aubane concentrates on the tiles for Flight of Pollen

Yesterday, Sunday 3 September, was the launch of Bee Aware Month, at the Treehouse Visitor Centre, Wellington Botannic Gardens.

We had some great game sessions playing Flight of Pollen.

Aubane (pictured) said “Interesting. Because you’ve got to work your brain, but have fun at the same time!”

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Flight of Pollen launch

Emily, on the right, shows Katie how to play
Kahu & Ru learning Flight of Pollen

The environmental board game Flight of Pollen launched at the Mahara Gallery on Saturday 2 September.

Designer JiL Hemming (Otaki), illustrator Cushla McGaughey (Waikanae), and graphic designer Don Little (ex-Waikanae), were joined by players from Kapanui School to show-case the new game.

“It takes a village to make a game,” said JiL as she thanked Janet Bayly (director Mahara Gallery), plus pledgers, supporters, game-testers, and many others for their generosity and expertise.

Money toward printing costs was raised via the PledgeMe campaign plus with a generous grant from the Philipp Family Foundation.

The how-to-play videos, made by Kapanui School students, were also launched.