Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Plants - Part 1

We started our Plants unit today with a study of Seeds.  We read the section of What Your Kindergartener Needs to Know that discussed plants and seeds.  George really does not like this book.  For some reason, he resists and acts up everytime we pull this book out.  I ended up letting them do some coloring pages from the Giant Science Resource Book while I read the sections.   We read a few other books on seeds (see list below) and began our experiments.

Our first experiment was to look closely at seeds and break open a seed to look inside.  First I took an assortment of seeds that we had just bought to start our vegetable garden for the year and allowed the kids to explore them using their magnifying glasses.  George mainly used the edge of his magnifier to break the seeds but I did manage to get him to examine some of them.

Using an experiment sheet from Science Experiments for Young Learners I had soaked lima bean seeds in water overnight.  We broke them open and examined the parts of the seed and viewed the tiny little plant that was starting to grow.
After examining our seeds and doing a record sheet we set up a series of experiments that will take a week or more to see results.  All the experiments are from Science Experiments for Young Learners although many of them are variations of things I have seen in many other places.

First we rolled up seeds in a moist paper towel - 5 rows of 5 seeds each.  After it was completely rolled up, we placed rubber bands around it to hold it closed and placed it in a jar with a small amount of water (about enough to cover the first row or two of seeds).  In about a week, we will unroll the paper towel and see which seeds germinated.
This didn't need to be placed in a window but this was the only shelf I had cleared off that I could keep the kids from disturbing.

For our next experiment, we set up two plastic bags with paper towels and seeds in them.  One will be kept moist while the other will remain dry.  We will view them each day to see any changes.

For our last seed experiment, we planted seeds in two different bowls of dirt.  One will be kept in the sun, the other in the dark.  We will observe these in a week and compare them.

George seems to know what the results are going to be already but I keep telling him we just have to wait and see.

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