Category Archives: Seeds
If you attended my Science workshop today, here is the Power Point I shared (and if you didn’t, it’s okay to look too!). Please e-mail me or contact me by e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) or by leaving a comment below. 🙂
Thanks for coming! I hope you got lots of inexpensive science ideas to use in your early childhood classrooms!
We’ve been doing a lot with seeds in the last few weeks.
First up, we had to fill our wonderful new greenhouse with seedlings!
These are the beginnings of our pumpkin seeds. We wanted to recycle our cardboard egg cartons and reuse some egg shells one of my students brought in, so we put the egg shells in the carton and planted seeds in them. The seedlings are 5 times bigger now and they have roots growing through and out of the sides and bottom of the egg carton.
Here are the same seeds a week later! 🙂
We also created a schema chart so that we could see what we already knew about seeds and so I could see the direction in which we needed to guide our learning:
After that we looked at seeds and drew our observations in our science journals.
We then created a chart where we placed questions that we wondered about seeds:
Check out my great find at my local Big Lots store… I was able to get this greenhouse for $30! It has four shelves and doubled our growing space! I let a teacher down the hall borrow my two shelf model so she could grow some plants of her own. There was also a walk in greenhouse model available for sale and if I would of had a place to put it, it would of been mine!
In keeping with the green theme here, we (the kids and I) decided to use as many recycled containers as possible to grow our seeds in. We used both halves of a cardboard egg container, complete with egg shell half cups! We also used a plastic cupcake tray that one of my students brought her birthday cupcakes in last week. We used some old cookie sheets I got at the Goodwill Outlet Store for way cheap as trays to put our containers on.
We’ve been learning and reading all about Pumpkins this week…even though I was out 2 days this week (my son was sick). We started off the week by taking a picture walk through the Big Book Pumpkin, Pumpkin by Jeanne Titherington. Then the children heard the story read aloud. On the second day, the children re-read the story and then re-told the story using their own words. Today, we looked at the pictures to help us re-tell the story and then we played Guess The Covered Word. I covered the words pumpkin, seeds, pulp, flower, and sprouts. We would read the sentence and when we got to a covered word, we would try to guess what the word was. If the first letter was correct, we sounded out the word we thought it might be and would figure out if it fit. If not, we needed a new word.
Then later in the afternoon, we cut open our pumpkin and checked out the insides. I scooped out the pulp, we observed it and I put it in a plastic baggie to take home and roast the seeds. We also have a few smaller pumpkins in our room that were donated by parents (THANK YOU!!!) so we could observe them. And observe them we did and wrote our findings down on our KOWL chart.
We began our study of insects/bugs by reading The Grouchy Ladybug by Eric Carle. After taking a picture walk and reading it aloud to the children, we discussed the clocks that are pictured on most of the pages. The children learned that we would be learning about telling time and addition (with ladybug spots) this week during math.
I have several sheets that I will post in the next few days that deal with telling time and ladybug addition…so stay tuned! You can download pictures to sequence by going to my PDF page and searching for them–they will only download on certain computers (not sure why!!), and so far there is nothing I can do about it! Sorry! You can search on Google for images and print those out.
We also checked in on our beans that we planted last week and noted our observations in our Bean Journals: beanjournal (you can switch these so that the journals take up 1/2 of a page side to side instead of top to bottom like they are here).
Our Painted Lady Butterflies (caterpillars really) have arrived and are eating lots and lots! They have doubled in size since arriving last Thursday, so we will soon transfer them to our netting we have set up for them.
We also looked at our Scholastic News: “How Do You Know It’s An Insect?”.
I’ve got so many awesome ideas about Science floating in my head right now, and some ideas for Math Work Stations that I’m going to be working on this summer, so I’ll post as I think! 🙂
Last week (yes, I’m a little behind) we read Jack and the Beanstalk, which ties in nicely to my seeds and planting theme. We began by reading Jack and the Beanstalk (the version by Little Golden Books). When we finished reading the story, we noticed that there was a large note hanging on our Morning Message paper:
The Giant had left us a message and some of his footprints:
The directions in his note were to find things that were the same length, longer than, and smaller than his footprints:
Tuesday, I gave the children plates of beans (the same ones from the previous week that they had already sorted). This time, I asked them to come to a consensus at their table about which 5 beans that their table would plant and care for. That was interesting!! We planted them in clear plastic gloves so that the children could watch them grow and change over time:
I asked the children to make sure that they all planted at least one lima bean and then asked them to consider these questions as they chose their beans.
Here they are hanging in the window.
I introduced the word hypothesis today and the children though about what kinds of beanstalks that their various beans would grow. Some one asked if there was a way to see inside the beans.
Wednesday, I asked the children if they could figure out a way that we could see inside the beans. They concluded that they knew that seeds opened once they had been planted so one of the things that was used to plant them must be the thing we would need. We made a list of things (sun, water, soil, love, air) and checked each one of the things off on our list. We decided that we had planted seeds in soil on Monday, so that was taken care of. We held our beans up to our hearts and talked to them (love) and although that did not work, it was awfully cute to watch! We also tried holding the beans up in the air and nothing happened. Finally, we decided that our experiment to see inside the beans would involve sun and water. Our hypothesis was that one of these ways was sure to make the beans open so that we could see inside them!
We also decided to use our greenhouse rather than take the beans outside. Some of the children were worried that squirrels and other animals might take the beans and we would not see what happened to them.
In the greenhouse.
Soaking in water.
We determined when we would check on them and also wanted to write something down to show what we were doing:
Thursday, we noticed that the beans that were soaking in the water had expanded and cracked open, so we used magnifying glasses to check them out (I was at Science Academy, so there are no photos for this!! Sorry!)
The children then got to plant beans of their own to take home and observe.
Because we had quite a few steps involved in planting these beans, we made a list of “Lab Notes” so that the children could refer back to them if they forgot what to do next:
That was our week last week…now on to this week!
We are reading a big book this week titled “Seeds”.
Because there are a few students who will be leaving early this week to head out on Spring Break, we did not do a Predictable Chart, however we did do several neat Inquiry Based things in Science. I like to begin almost all my themes/units with a KWL/OWL chart to asses where my children are at and what they are interested in. We completed the “K” portion of this chart first, then after Observing the seeds (see below) we completed the “O” portion and the “W” (wonder) section. I like to change the “W” from “What we WANT to Learn” to “What we WONDER” because it gets the children asking questions of the “I Wonder…” variety, something that is holding them back from exploring the world! At this young age, they know what they want to learn about somethings, but they have no basis to draw from for many Science concepts (some do!!). Asking “I Wonder…” questions sets the ground work for them to wonder, so ALL of my KWL charts are either KOWL or OWL charts.
This is the “Wonder” section continued…
Today, Tuesday, we planted all kinds of vegetables in Containers. My kids took such an interest in the Seeds book that I went and got many of the seeds mentioned in the story.
The next few months (until the end of May) will be spent on growing things/plants/bugs/insects/Monarchs/Jack and the Beanstalk/and anything else that fits in to one of these categories! 🙂