Activity Plan Mixed Ages: Pineapple Investigations
Children will enjoy using all of their senses and sharpening skills as they explore a fresh, delicious pineapple.
- Grades: PreK–K
- fresh pineapple
- black plastic bag (to hide pineapple)
- chart paper and marker
- oaktag, washable tempera paint, trays, paintbrushes medium-size planting pot, pebbles, sand, and soil
Objective: While investigating a pineapple, children will engage in activities that encourage sensory exploration, problem solving, creative-thinking, language skills, and the development of science concepts.
What Is It? A Pineapple Guessing Game. Place a pineapple inside a black plastic bag and secure it. Explain to children that they will play a guessing game. Ask them to hold the bag and guess what is inside. Ask older children to explain their answers.
Describing a Pineapple: A Language Experience Chart. Pass the pineapple around and encourage children to touch and smell it. Create a language experience chart with children to describe the pineapple. Encourage them to notice the texture, size, smell, colors, and so on. Cut the top part of the pineapple plant, extending Y" below the leaf section. Save the leaf section for the planting activity. Cut up the pineapple and give each child a small piece to taste. Include their descriptions of how a pineapple tastes in their language experience chart.
Pineapple Planting: A Science Investigation. Ask children to predict what would happen if you planted the top of the pineapple in soil. Record their predictions, then invite them to assist in this planting activity. Place a layer of pebbles or gravel in the bottom of a planting pot. Mix an equal amount of soil and sand and fill the pot a few inches from the top. Place the pineapple plant into the soil and cover with remaining soil and sand mixture. Water the plant well and tightly secure a plastic bag over it. Ask children to think about why a pineapple plant must be kept warm and moist. Find a sunny place to put it. Create an observation chart with children to record the daily growth of the plant. Remove the plastic bag once the middle section of the plant begins growing new leaves. The plant will need regular watering and access to sun.
Cooking: Ambrosia. Prepare the ingredients ahead of time. Invite the children to combine the following into a large bowl: 1 cup sliced bananas, 1 cup diced mandarin oranges, 1 cup crushed or finely chopped pineapple, and 1/2 cup shredded coconut. Optional: 1-1/2 cups whipped cream, miniature marshmallows, and maraschino cherries. Gently fold in the whipped cream, marshmallows, and cherries. Chill before serving. Enjoy! Remember: Check for allergies before serving this dish.
My Little Island by Frane Lessac
My Tutu Kane and My Grandpa by Nancy Alpert Mower
The Tiny Seed by Eric Carle
This activity originally appeared in the March, 2001 issue of Early Childhood Today.