Saturday, May 26, 2012

Learning About Plants

The girls (34 months old) planted some pinto beans in a clear container with some wet cotton balls last week.  Within a day, two of the beans started growing.. and growing.. and now one of them is over a foot tall already!  L and E were very excited to check on their beans every day, and I was amazed at how quickly they grew.  Today we learned more about plants...



I recently found this book on Science from FK Publishing's "One Million Things" series.  We've already used it to explore the properties of living things, and today we looked at the section on plants:

L and E compared their bean plants to the plants in the book and labeled all the parts of a plant (roots, stem, leaves).  I even learned something new - that plants have a root that is larger than the rest, called the primary root, and we identified it on our bean plants.  We also explored the function of each part of the plant and discussed how plants were alive (growth, food, respiration, movement, etc..).  The girls also really liked learning about carnivorous plants, and making their hands into Venus Flytraps that snapped closed when the fly (played by Mommy) landed on them.

We also measured our plants:



We made drawing of plants with all the right parts:

And when E asked for glue, this turned into a 3-D craft:



Now that I know how quickly the beans grow, I think I'll organize a series of experiments for the girls to try (Do plants grow better in light or dark?  Can we get a plant to grow in a specific direction?  etc.. ).  I'd like them to also measure the plants every day and plot their growth.  I think we'll move on to other topics right now, however, and revisit this subject later this summer.

UPDATE: I was so inspired by how much my kids enjoyed early learning games that I created the La La Logic Critical Thinking Curriculum for 3-6 year olds, which includes online brain challenge games, printable worksheets, enrichment activities and more!


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