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The specialist international beekeeping organisation

Top Tips for Trainers. Principles of beekeeping training

  • Clauss B.
  • 1997
  • Article In Bfd Journal
  • English
  • Bees for Development 45 41890 Text on this website


  By Bernhard Clauss Germany Bernhard has trained beekeepers in several countries including Botswana Germany and Zambia. Here are his top tips for making sure that beekeeping training is excellent. STARTING POINTSWho asked for the training?

  • First Priority - beginners leaders of self-help groups students teachers youth club members and beekeepers among them respected leaders representatives of beekeeping groups.
  • Second Priority - Beekeeping trainers and extension staff who have identified the need for more demonstrations practice and experiments.

How qualified is the trainer? Trainers must:

  • be fearless beekeepers who handle bees gently and in a respectful way.
  • be used to and confident enough to work and assist with using only locally-made equipment and protective clothing
  • respect local customs and languages
  • be flexible but reliable: advisors who can listen create confidence.

Are there proper training facilities? There must be:

  • enough occupied hives available for demonstrations and practicals a minimum of six hives
  • sufficient and appropriate beekeeping equipment teaching aids and rooms or shelter for lectures
  • adequate accommodation and catering facilities.

No more than eight participants per trainer ensures intensive participation in practical bee handling.Is the trainer aware of the need for careful planning? Targets: the needs of participants and the use of local resources must be considered. Season: the best time for basic courses is the beginning of the cropping season. Period of training: the trainer should decide on the form the training will take. The length of the course and whether to include extension visits will depend on the needs identified. Will the participants be selected with care?The requirement of participants influences the planning procedure. Participants should be grouped. Ideally they should have the same level of education experience motivation and beekeeping experience. COURSE OBJECTIVES

  • The development of interest in bees through participation and communication throughout the course
  • The development of knowledge through understanding
  • Information relevant to the actual needs of the target group and to beekeeping practice in general.

TRAINING METHODSTeaching behaviour of trainers should include:

  • a positive social attitude
  • the ability to speak spontaneously
  • encouragement of participation
  • persuasive power by setting examples
  • frequent changes of methods and teaching aids to maintain interest
  • alternation of theoretical and practical lessons: whatever participants achieve in practice needs to be confirmed in theory
  • practical involvement of participants with special abilities: trainers should utilise “expertsâ€?

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