Plants is a great unit to teach during your spring units. In the northern states the boys and girls will notice new plants starting to grow and grass turning from brown to green. Many children will help their parents plant gardens and other plants. This is also the time some teachers will have students plant a flower for Mother’s Day.
When I introduce plants I always start with a KWL chart. Students always surprise me with what they already know.
I think it is important that the boys and girls learn that there are more than one type of plant. I place them on the white board under the label. We talk about different plants under each label. Several of the examples are shown below.
What Do Plants Need to Live?
This is a great question to ask early in the unit. I ask the boys to name living and non-living item. This can be tricky for some. Then we discuss what living things need to live. I ask the boys and girls to brainstorm what plants need to live. I always have students do a little writing when introducing topics to help them recall information.
What are the Parts of a Plant?
The boys and girls are usually able to name most of the parts of a plant. I also like them to know the jobs of each part as well.
Labeling the plants using a craft activity is a fun way to review the parts of a plant!
I like to look closer at each part of a plant and their jobs and use experiments and activities to help students understand how they work. The boys and girl love the Carnation Experiment. I add food coloring to the water of the carnation. The boys and girls first predict and than properly document their findings. Enjoy this freebie to use in your classroom.
Life Cycle of a Plant
There are so many great books that look closer at the life cycle of a plant. I like to use, “The Tiny Seed,” by Eric Carle, when I introduce this topic to my students.
After the story I like to show the boys and girls an anchor chart that outlines the stages.
As we discuss the stages, the boys and girls label them on their recording sheet (I give each child a clipboard).
For a quick review later in the week, the boys and girls place the life cycle of a plant in order on this cute craftivity.
We continue to discuss observation and the life cycle of a plant as students watch their own little plant grow in their sprout castle.
The boys and girls write about what they see in their Sprout Castle Observation Journal.
We wrap up our unit discussing all of the plant parts that we eat.
I Place the “Plant Parts We Eat” label at the top of a white board and the smaller “plant part” labels below. Then, we sort different foods under the matching label.
Then the boys and girls fill in their recording sheet.
I like to wrap up our unit with a taste test of plant parts. This is a great way to have students try new foods and to discuss everything that they have learned. I complete the letter “L” of our KWL chart. I love to see all of the new things that they have learned!!