Predictions About Plants

What do plants need to grow? Draw predictions and results with Crayola® Dry-Erase Crayons as you experiment with sunlight and water.

  • 1.

    Research plants and what plants need to grow. Begin with a round-robin share. Present the category “Different Kinds of Plants” and invite children to go around the circle naming specific trees, flowers, and other plants with which they are familiar. Create a list of questions about plants. Read books, gather information from educational websites, and interview farmers and gardeners to learn more about what plants need to grow.

  • 2.

    Ask children to create their own plant growth experiments to answer questions they have about plants. Or design a whole-class experiment using three young bean plants. One will receive both sunlight and water, another will receive just sunlight, and the third will receive just water. Discuss how you will measure the results of your experiments (plant height, number and/or description of leaves, bean production, illustrations of plants, etc.).

  • 3.

    Provide Crayola Dry-Erase Crayons and individual dry-erase boards for children to illustrate their predictions of the results of their experiments. Work together to also create a data table using dry-erase crayons on a large dry-erase board. Plan how often students will record data and create enough spaces for each measurement, illustration, or description.

  • 4.

    Record results of data, including plant measurements, descriptions, and illustrations of leaves and plants.

  • 5.

    Compare predictions with results. Create new predictions as children understand and interpret new data. Use a cloth, tissue, or paper towel to erase and replace data.

Standards

  • LA: With prompting and support, read informational texts appropriately complex for grade level.
  • LA: Read with sufficient accuracy and fluency to support comprehension.
  • LA: Write informative/explanatory texts in which they name a topic, supply some facts about the topic, and provide some sense of closure.
  • LA: Participate in collaborative conversations with diverse partners about grade level topics and texts with peers and adults in small and larger groups.
  • LA: Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas and information clearly.
  • MATH: Measure and estimate lengths in standard units.
  • MATH: Solve problems involving measurement and estimation of intervals of time, liquid volumes, and masses of objects.
  • MATH: Represent and interpret data.
  • VA: Students will initiate making works of art and design by experimenting, imagining and identifying content.
  • SCI: Plan and conduct an investigation to determine if plants need sunlight and water to grow.
  • SCI: Make observations of plants and animals to compare the diversity of life in different habitats.

Adaptations

  • Each day you conduct the experiments, ask children to write brief reflections in their journals, answering the questions: “What did I learn today?” and “What questions do I have?”
  • Consider having children grow their own bean plants for this experiment. Document each day’s growth on dry-erase boards with dry-erase crayons. Compare one plant’s growth with another.
  • Create flowering plant growth collages using construction paper and Crayola Glue Sticks. Provide each child with a foam plate to turn into a flower using Crayola Dry-Erase Crayons and scissors. Show all the elements needed for plant growth using construction paper shapes arranged in collage style around the flower. Use this project for an informal authentic assessment of student understanding of plant growth needs.
  • Read aloud or gather multiple copies of The Apple Pie Tree by Zoe Hall. Use dry-erase crayons to illustrate and label the parts of an apple tree throughout the seasons of the year. Gather the ingredients needed to bake an apple pie with the children. Identify which of the ingredients comes from a plant and from which part.
  • Illustrate and label the stages of plant growth using dry-erase crayons. Be sure to include seed, roots, stem, bud and flower.
  • Other plant experiments children might enjoy include: seed dissection (What is inside of a seed?) growing beans with and without fertilizer and/or compost (How can we help plants grow better?) transpiration (How much water evaporates from a plant?)