Ready-To-Use Teaching Ideas: Science
- Paper cups or a small milk carton cut in half
- Small plastic water pitcher
- Small pebbles
- Lima bean seeds
- Potting soil
- Science: Learn how a plant grows from seeds, and the parts of a plant
- Fine motor
In a dish place lima beans between wet layers of paper towels to loosen the outer covering and make ready for planting.
Begin the discussion about plants by writing the word botany on the board. Ask if anyone has an idea what this word, botany, the study of plants, might mean. Let children share their ideas and discuss plants. Explain that they will become botanists for the next few days as they study plants. Why are plants important to us? What do plants provide us? How do we use plants in our daily life? Did they know they eat plants daily? What do they have in their homes that is made from plants?
Pass out cups or milk cartons and ask children to write their names on them. Have children count out six pebbles and place in the bottom of their plant container.
Fill the cup half full with potting soil, place three lima bean seeds gently into the cup, and cover with soil.
Let children pour a little water from the pitcher to dampen the soil.
Place containers on a sunny windowsill. In a few days, a sprout will pop out of the soil.
Allow children time to make daily observations on the growth of their plant. Suggest that each child record his or her data and draw pictures in a botanist book.
Remember: Young learners will need to be reminded that the plant won't shoot up in a day. Give them some concrete time references, such as "the little sprout will probably appear after four sleeps, or on our fifth day of planting." Ask children to place a bean in a cup each day until they get to five. Be sure to plant a couple extra containers of seeds in case some don't sprout.
TAKE HOME ACTIVITY
Ask parents to help their child record the plants he eats for dinner. Together, draw or cut out magazine pictures of these plants and glue them onto a paper plate. Ask parents to help their child label the foods. Encourage children to bring them into class. Did anyone eat the same plants? What was their favorite?
CURRICULUM CONNECTION: MOVEMENT
Play some music and let children act out the growth stages of a tiny seed becoming a plant. Talk them through the music as they begin as a tiny seed being planted and emerge into a beautiful plant. Remember to talk about the sun's warm rays and the rain plants need to grow.
One Bean by Anne Rockwell
The Tiny Seed by Eric Carle
We Love the Dirt by Tony Johnston