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Lesson Plan: How Plants Grow

Subject:  Science

Grade: 5

Lesson Objective: To understand and contend that plants get what they need from air and water

Next Gen Science Standard:  5-LS1-1. Support an argument that plants get the materials they need for growth chiefly from air and water.



  • What do plants need to grow?  (Allow the students to answer.)



  • There are many different types of plants and each different type of plant has different needs. 
  • However, all plants need water and sun so that they can grow. 
  • Why do plants need water and sun?  (Allow the students to answer.)
  • Plants need water and sun because they make their own food, which is called photosynthesis.
  • A plant’s leaves have parts that are called chloroplasts.  The chloroplasts have green pigment, which is called chlorophyll.  Chlorophyll is what makes a plant’s leaves green. 
  • The chloroplasts absorb carbon dioxide from the air.  The carbon dioxide mixes with the stored energy from the sun in the chloroplasts and creates a simple sugar through a chemical reaction.
  • The simple sugar that is created is then transported through the plant and used by the plant as energy.
  • Water is also needed and used in the process of photosynthesis.  Without water, photosynthesis would not be able to happen.
  • So, what are the two things that plants need in order to grow?  (Allow the students to answer.)
  • Plants need air and water.
  • Now, you are going to pretend that someone is trying to convince you that the only thing that plants need is to be planted in soil.
  • Think about what you would say to them and how you would try to convince them that the main things that plants need are water and air.
  • You are going to write down what your response to that person would be.
  • Does anyone have any questions?



  • Who would like to share what you wrote?  (Allow the students to share.)

Written by Kimberly Greacen, Education World® Contributing Writer

Kimberly is an educator with extensive experience in curriculum writing and developing instructional materials to align with Common Core State Standards and Bloom's Taxonomy.

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