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Plant Seeds of Learning:
Classroom Lessons Bring Plants to Life

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Lesson PlanningSpring has sprung! It's the perfect time to explore plants in the classroom. This week, Education World presents five new classroom lessons that involve students in growing things and learning about scientific classification, plant cell structure, the importance of plants in our history, and the many uses of plants! Included: Links to more than a dozen additional lesson plans for teaching about plants and gardens!

Will your students learn about plants by growing little seedlings in milk cartons on the windowsill, or will they research, plan, and develop an entire schoolyard garden? Whether your students actually dig in the dirt or take a more classroom-oriented approach to learning, a study of plants offers unlimited possibilities for lively hands-on learning!

This week, Education World offers five new classroom lessons to bring a study of plants to life!

Plus, Education World editors searched the Web to "dig up" more than a dozen other great plant lessons for you! You'll find links to those lessons in More Lessons below.

FIVE LESSONS FOR TEACHING ABOUT PLANTS


Seeds for Thought

"[A] mind may be likened to a garden, which may be intelligently cultivated or allowed to run wild; but whether cultivated or neglected, it must, and will, bring forth. If no useful seeds are put into it, then an abundance of useless weed seeds will fall therein and will continue to produce their kind."
            --James Allen
            As a Man Thinketh

Click any lesson plan headline for a complete teaching resource. (Approximate grade levels for each lesson appear in parentheses.)

Pair the Plants: An Introduction to Scientific Names
Can your students match common plant names with their scientific names? Pair the Plant Names work sheet included. (Grades 3-12)

Eggshell People
An empty eggshell morphs into an eggshell person with grass "hair" growing on its head! Students measure hair growth and write eggshell people diaries or stories. (Grades K-5)

Nuts for Peanuts: Peanut Plants, Peanut Timeline, and Peanut-s-timation
Peanuts spur all kinds of classroom activities -- from making timelines and snacks to investigating how peanut plants grow and estimating the number of peanuts in a large container! (Grades PreK-8)

T-Shirts to Dye For
Help students create natural dyes from nature's plants as people have done for centuries. (Grades K-12)

Make Three-Dimensional Plant and Animal Cell Models
A hands-on activity for visual and tactile learners demonstrates the 3-D characteristics of cells while reinforcing students' knowledge of plant and animal cell structure. (Grades 6-12)

MORE LESSONS

Education World editors "dug up" some more plant lessons. Find these lessons on the Education World Web site. Click any headline below to link to a lesson.

Out! Out! Damp Sprout!
In this Showbiz-Science lesson from Vicki Cobb, students grow baby plants from all kinds of supermarket seeds.

Plant Growth
Students learn about the parts of a plant and a seed as they plant sees and observe and record their growth.

Find these lessons on the Web. Click any headline below to link to a lesson.

Which Sex Is It? (Grades 6-12)
What's Wrong With the Plants? (Grades 9-12)
The Great Plant Escape (Grades 3-6)
Plants Thematic Unit (Grades PreK-3) (archived version)
How Plants Grow: What Do Living Things Need to Survive? (Grades 4-8)
Build a Rootbox (Grades PreK-6)
Spring Is Sprung: Water Movement in Plants (Grades K-3)
How Do Seeds Travel? (Grades K-4)
Building and Using a Hydroponic/Aquaculture System in the Classroom (Grades 9-12)
Plants and Animals: Partners in Pollination (Grades 4-9)
Hands-On Plant Activities (K-4)

MORE GENERAL PLANT RESOURCES FOR TEACHERS

Garden Grants for Schools (All grades)
What Do Plants Need to Grow? (Grades 2-4)
Primarily Plants (Grades PreK-3)
Explore the Plant Kingdom: Links for Teachers (Grades K-6)
My First Garden: Gardening Fun-damentals (Grades K-6)
KidsGardening: Garden Resources (All grades)
Ag Lesson Plans in PowerPoint Format (Grades 6-12)
American Field Guide & Video Clips (PBS) (All grades)
Our Own Environmental Center (All grades)
Let's Play Garden Concentration (Java2 required) (All grades)

Article by Gary Hopkins
Education World®
Copyright © 2010 Education World

Originally published 03/29/2002
Last updated 02/19/2010

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