Learn how plants grow with practical lesson to teach kids plants reproduction.
To grow a plant may take weeks before kids can see the young shoot sprout from the seed. It can be a challenge. Children may not have the patience to see the full-grown plant. There are times, for any other reasons, the seed just does not sprout into a plant.
To ensure a successful and fun science activity, I suggest using green bean or mung bean in this practical lesson. This is one of the easiest ways to grow a plant within a week. Kids feel a sense of accomplishment as they see how their plants grow each day.
Here is what to do:
Put some green beans on a damped ball of cotton wool in either a plate or shallow glass. Leave it in an open area in the house where it is exposed to sunlight. Remember to water it daily (just ensure the cotton wool is kept damped). Observe seed germination process; the changes happen on the green beans as roots and leaves start to grow.
Let children chart out height of the plant or draw the differences they see on the beans in their science journal.
Plants generally grow from seeds but there are plants which can reproduce easily by stem cutting. This method is relatively fast to see how plants grow.
Look for hardy plants that can reproduce easily. Based on experience, I strongly recommend Indian Borage plant. This plant grows easily. It also serve as a home remedy for sore throat and cough.
Cut part of the plant from the stem. Leave it in a container of water. Change the water frequent so that it does not breed mosquitoes. Do remember to leave the plant in a place with sunlight.
Roots start to sprout from the stems after about one to two weeks. You can either leave the plant in the water container or take it out and plant it in soil.
The process of growing a plant is the best learning experience for children to learn how plants reproduce. In the process of growing plant, they learn plant is a living thing. It needs water, air and sunlight to grow.
You can also add variation to this activity by growing a few plants in different places or under different conditions. Do the following after a young shoot has sprouted out from the seed.
Let children observe the different plants under different conditions for a few days. Record the observation in a science journal. They will notice the young plant in the covered shoe box will grow towards the hole.
Do remember to remind them plants need water, air and sunlight to grow. Plant also grows towards sunlight.
Teach seeds dispersion method completes the plants life cycles knowledge.
Children need to understand how seeds disperse, germinate and then plant starts to grow. Seeds are dispersed by
Take a walk around garden or park.
Collect various types of seeds you can find with the kids. Sometimes you
may have to help the kids to crack some pods to get to the seeds
You can also let kids pick seeds from fruits and vegetables found in kitchen while you prepare food. (My kids even pick up seeds they found in supermarket while doing grocery shopping with me!)
Collect and sort them according to different dispersion
method. Observe the seeds together and point out the unique features of
each seed that determine the dispersion method.
We can learn so much about seeds. Remind them how plants grow from seeds with germination process.
Teach them to identify the various species of seeds and which plants or trees it belong. Play “identify the seeds” game when you and the children go back to the garden the next time
You can use those collected seeds for craft purpose. Just use our creativity to get ideas what we can do to those seeds.....a seed collection scrapbook!
Visit vegetable farm with the kids if you have the opportunity. Farming using modern technology is common in space-scarce Singapore. Expose kids to how research and new technology helps to increase food production is essential in this modern world.
It is an eye opener for the kids when we visit a vegetable farm using hydroponic farming method.
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