Just wanted to report to all those helpful people that answered my post a couple of weeks ago that I spent the day today talking myself blue in the face, and all the advice you gave was Good!
MB, I took your suggestion and built my own Tew-style observation hive. I do not consider myself a craftsman, or even "handy" so I was wondering how such a project would turn out for a guy who has a a Skil saw and dry wall screws (only), not a full-fledged woodworking shop. As the credit card commercial puts it "Priceless!" On the next round, I intend to use glass rather than plex, which I found tough to get measured right and cut for a good fit. And the plex was flexible enough that the bees pushed on the top and bottom and bowed it out. Nothing that duct tape couldn't fix. But glass wouldn't have bowed in the first place.
But definately an observation hive is the One Thing to Not Leave Home Without if going on an expedition to the schoolroom. As luck would have it, I got the queen on this frame, without even trying to or looking for her, so I have been enjoying looking at her actions myself.
Nine different sessions from 08:30 to 16:30 made for a long day [pshew], but it went well. I had forgotten what a great age 4th and 5th graders are for natural curiosity. Lots of "bright and shining faces." And I didn't have to eat "school lunch" as the host teachers brought it potluck which turned out to be very tasty.
The poster set made it easier to answer questions, too. So thank you all for the help. MJ
Of course the disadvantage to glass is one well aimed hit by a mischeivious child and you could end up with a room full of bees.