Planting and watching seeds grow is a
wonderful experience for children. A seed is like magic, a seemingly
lifeless thing, that can grow into a living plant. Growing seeds can be
a very inspirational activity, especially if the children are allowed to
watch the seed grow and mature. Watching plants grow will also teach
students patience and observational skills.
The requirements for growing a plant
is water, nutrients, and sunlight. Too much or too little of these
requirements can prevent a plant from growing. This activity has the
students looking at the key components of nutrients, so they need to
have the soil. In the first grade the students will grow seeds again,
but without the soil. In the first grade they will be concentrating on
actual mechanism of growth, while kindergarten is focused on all the
During this activity the students
will prepare the growing environments for their seeds, plant them, water
them, and then watch them grow. Prior to this activity you may request
from parents any old seeds that they may not have used.
- Save milk containers and cut off
the tops. Punch small holes at the bottom of the containers. Tell the
students that when the seeds grow and the roots get larger, they needs
air. Water is important, but too much water sitting in the container can
"rot" the roots. The rocks are used to prevent the roots from
touching the bottom and getting water soaked. Instruct students to place
a few small rocks on the bottom of the milk container, just enough to
make one layer. Get a bucket of soil and have the students fill the milk
containers 3/4 full of soil.
- Place the seed about 1 centimeter
into the soil. This will vary depending on the type of seed (refer to
the package the seeds came in). When the students water their seeds,
first have them use a spray bottle to water, so that they make the
"home" for the seed ready because pouring water will unsettle
the seed. They can start to pour water, when the seed starts to root.
- Move the seed to a warm area, but
not into direct sunlight. Again this will depend on the seeds. The seed
provides food for the plant until the leaves are formed, which will then
let the plant produce its own food. We recommend that you read the
directions to the students so they understand that you must do this for
each package of seeds you get.
- Be careful that the students do
not over water their seeds. It is OK for the soil to dry a little, a
soaking wet soil is not the best environment.