ALL

Getting Started with Soils

Before beginning a soil unit, ask students to draw or predict what they would find in a sample of soil. Then bring in or have students collect samples of soils from different settings: a building site, a garden, woods, and schoolyard, for instance. Invite each small group of students to examine a sample with hand lenses, toothpicks, and other tools, then describe the soil's color, texture, moisture, and smell. Ask students to identify, describe, and record the different materials they find. What evidence of plant and animal life do they see?

Biosphere in a Bottle

What insights can a jar full of mud and water give us about life on planet Earth? Can an ecosystem within a jar teach us about the Earth's biosphere? Consider inviting your students to set up windowsill or GrowLab investigations to explore these questions.

Praying Mantid Activities

Keeping praying mantids thriving indoors was a challenge that consumed Fran Bosi's elementary science students in Bayside, NY. Wanting to closely observe the creatures in the classroom, they had obtained mantid eggs from a science supplier during the winter when spring still seemed a remote possibility.

Herbs Across the Curriculum

With their rich historical backstories and uses, herbs can inspire cross-disciplinary activities for school gardeners. Some examples follow:

Dipping Into A Pond's Ecosystem

"My inner-city first graders had little experience with and access to wildlife or habitats," reports Terre Haute, IN, teacher Todd Warren. But that didn't stop them from hatching ideas and questions about what forms of life they might like to see in their small courtyard.

Worm Activities for the Classroom

The True Measure of a Worm

Challenge students to guess the length of an earthworm, then try using a ruler or tape measure to determine the actual size. Ask, What problems do you encounter? After watching how earthworms move, why do you think it's difficult to measure their true length? What is it about their bodies that might cause them to seem to shrink and grow? How do you think this helps them move through soil? Draw bar graphs comparing an estimate of a worm's length with its true length, both when stretched out and when shortened.

Growing Classroom Herbs

Many herb plants can be easily grown in a classroom light garden or windowsill, started from seeds, cuttings, or plants. Local nurseries, friends' gardens, and catalogs are good sources of seeds and plants. Here are a few tips to get you started.

Dyeing Across the Curriculum

Fran Ludwig, Science Consultant from Lexington, MA, reports that the plant dyeing students tried during a study of colonial crafts sparked lots of questions worthy of classroom investigation: What happens if we leave it in the dye bath longer? Will dyes work differently in different types of fabrics? What flowers might make good dyes? Will different parts of the same plant produce different colors? Can we dye other materials like wood, shells, etc.?

Digging Deeper with Seeds

Discover How They Get Around

Because plants are anchored to the earth, they have to be clever about relocating their offspring (seeds) so they won't have to compete for resources with their parents. Some are carried on the wind or water. Others hitch a ride on passing animals or are naturally catapulted great distances. Those that are concealed in tempting fruits are eaten by animals and deposited elsewhere. Invite students to take a fall seed walk in search of clues of traveling seeds.

Flower/Pollinator Investigations

As students actively explore blooms indoors and out, consider how to help them grasp the concept that every aspect of flowers is vital to their mission: to spread pollen and produce seeds. Students' observations will lead to fertile questions, some of which they can answer through investigations. When appropriate, consider infusing the following types of questions to prompt further thinking about flower/pollinator alliances.

 

Syndicate content

KidsGardening logoGardeningWithKidsNational Gardening Assocation logo


 

Kids Gardening and the National Gardening Association actively work with schools and communities across the country to provide educational resources and build gardens to promote health, wellness, and sustainability.

 

Copyright © 1999-2014 National Gardening Association     |     www.kidsgardening.org & www.garden.org      |     Created on 03/15/99, 

Last updated on 10/21/2014
seo google sıra bulucu kanun script encode decode google sira bulucu google pagerank sorgulama seo google sıra bulucu ukash kanunlar