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How bee sting leads to big award for Chesterfield students

Posted at 9:17 AM, Jul 18, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-18 09:23:44-04

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. --  Now that the buzz of winning is over, students in the film class at Clover Hill High School can reflect on the teamwork it took to win Best Documentary for "Hive Mind" in the Virginia High School League Film Festival.

Director and graduating senior Nolan Zunk got the idea after seeing his grandfather work with beehives.

"Honeybees, although most people are disconnected from them; they have such a profound impact on our everyday life," Zunk said. "A lot of the shots we used in the film are just really beautiful. Luckily, we were able to film in the springtime, so we got a log of flower shots and the colors were just vibrant.  To see the bees flying around and pollinating them was amazing."

The film work was award winning, but film teacher Amanda Berneche knew something was missing in producing the documentary.

"I asked the music teacher, ‘Is there someone who would write music or do music?’, and he goes, 'Oh, I have the kid!'  "

Zunk called Kyle Valrose a music prodigy.

"I have an idea," Valrose said, “and I try to put that onto whatever I need to make it musical and melodic."

If only the bees were as easy to work with.

"I got stung once," Zunk said.  “Right on my lip.  As soon as I'd taken the hood off."

"Every kid learns the basics," Ms. Berneche said, “and then there's some students that are exceptional that go above and beyond."

Perseverance and pollen leads to Building Better Minds.

Building Better Minds airs every Wednesday on CBS 6 News at 6 a.m.