Students will look inside seeds to discover the beginning of a plant, and will discuss elements that plants need to grow.
- Students will look inside a seed to discover the beginning of a plant
- Students will discuss elements that are important for plants to grow – air, water, food
- lima beans; soak in water overnight
- magnifying glasses
- illustration of lima bean with baby plant inside
- divide children into cooperative groups, if desired
- Part 2 – ziploc bags, wet paper towels
How does a plant begin? Ask students for thoughts and predictions. How does a seed turn into a plant? Tell them that scientists make predictions and study things to find answers to their questions. Today you are going to be a scientist.
Give each student a seed, lima bean, that has been soaked in water so it is easier to open. Show them how to open the seeds carefully. (They fall apart, so you must be gentle!) Ask students to see if they can find out how a seed turns into a plant. After looking on their own, have them help friends find out why. Have them talk about it with their groups as they look. Make sure every child sees a baby plant.
Come back to the carpet and have students discuss their conclusions. Show the illustration of the parts of a seed including the baby plant, seed coat, and plant food.
Extending the Activity:
Now that we know where a plant begins, can it grow where we left it? What does it need to grow? What are some things that you need to grow? Water, food, sunlight – we don’t know for sure, so we are going to be scientists again to find the answer to our questions.
Put beans in ziploc bags to test the following conditions:
- no water (no wet paper towel)
- no light (cover in black, put in closet)
- no food (take seed apart–baby plant w/o bean)
- optional: no air (close ziploc bag)
Check bags periodically to see what happens and discuss results.
By: Amanda Post, Kindergarten Teacher