Friday, March 22, 2013

Garden Science

We've been having so much fun in Science Lately as we study plants and animals and living and non-living things. There is something to be said about hands on learning. I can stand at the front of the classroom and read from a text book all I want, but when they actually get their hands dirty with soil, explore an animal at the zoo or examine parts of a plant under a microscope, it makes all the difference.  
The celery and food coloring was our first introduction into how the stems of plants work. Watching the stem 'drink' the colored water was so much fun for the kids. They each wrote out what they thought would happen and compared it to what actually did happen. After we had colored celery, we sliced off strips and examined them under a microscope. We even had a taste test to see if the colored ones tasted any different from the one that we left in plain water. 
We learned how easy it was to re-grow green onions and have been able to harvest them once a week!! This has been so much fun to see and enjoy for all of us, even daddy was impressed to see this work! We plan on trying celery and carrots next! 
As we tackled today's lesson, they sampled different roots and were so excited to tell Daddy later that night that they ate ROOTS!!! Plan for this lesson ahead of time and it will be so worth it for the kids to learn that they can actually eat roots like carrots, beets and radishes!

I made up this worksheet for the kids to make sure that they truly understood everything we were learning. It's easy to adapt to different learners. I left the words on the bottom on for the younger two and cut them off of the bottom of the page with my oldest.  
It was time to get our garden started and fit it into our lesson as well! I picked up this magnetic watering schedule at Michael's in the dollar spot and the rest of our stuff was from a home improvement store! We were ready to roll!  
With each step we discussed plant parts and what would happen as they grew. We also discussed all the different seeds and how each seed was different. Some were so tiny and some were so big that it was amazing to think of all the things that these would become. 
The kids took turns trying out all the different jobs I created in the planting process and they got along the entire time. The conversation eventually moved on to just them discussing plants and what would happen on their own, without me leading the way. They were truly involved with every step.
I made up these cute little garden markers and printed them on cardstock. They are not that sturdy or waterproof, but they are perfect for while this little garden sprouts indoors! The kids loved writing out the types of seeds they were putting in and even let Roman have a shot at it. 
Enjoy the weekend my friends!

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