Frustrated with the lockdown? I wonder how many of you are ‘getting used’ to staying at home most of the time? It’s really strange to think how the natural world around us continues its lifecycles and growth in its various habitats , whilst we have had to adapt to our own household habitat more than usual. If we had been at school, most year groups would have spent some of this term looking at plants. Next time you go out for your hour of exercise, why don’t you do that! You could have these guides on your phone or tablet leaf spotter sheet, spring flower spotter and it’s almost time to use a summer wildlife guide!
If you find any flowers that have broken or fallen you might like to try this STEM activity. We had a go at this in school with some daffodils over the Easter Holiday and the children loved it!
HOW TO DISSECT A FLOWER
You will need any flower with large parts. Lilies are great but watch out for pollen stains. Tulips, Daffodils and Iris flowers also work well (although all the daffodils in my area seem to have died for this year!) Also a paper plate or sheet of card, scissors, tweezers and a magnifying glass if you have one. Have a look at this short flower dissection video before you start.
Lay your flower out over a paper plate, tray or sheet of cardboard. Can you identify the different parts before you dissect it? This parts of a flower web page is worth looking at whilst you are dissecting your flower.
Label areas of the different parts of a flower on your piece of cardboard or paper plate and place the dissected pieces with the correct label.
- Try to find the following flower parts:
- Root – carries water and nutrients from the soil to the plant and keeps it anchored in the ground.
- Petal – often brightly coloured to attract insects
- Leaf – uses energy from sunlight to photosynthesise creating oxygen and sugars for the plant to use for energy
- Pollen – pollen is a fine powdery substance which contains the male reproductive cells. It is produced by the anthers of seed bearing plants.
- Stem – a plant stem transports water and nutrients from the soil to the rest of the plant. The stem supports the leaves and flowers allowing them to be raised above the ground to be in the light.
Another activity you could try, when you go on your walk, is to collect a range of different plants and materials you find and wrap them around a journey stick . When you get home, write about your journey through nature using your journey stick to help you remember your travels.
Other plant activities…
If you can get hold of some then have a go at planting a seed and watching it grow (eg. a sunflower). Draw the different stages of growth and have a look on the internet to find out about the lifecycle of plants.
If you have more than one seed you might like to set up your own investigation to see where in your house they grow best, or how well they grow without one of they things they need, such as water, or a suitable temperature. Let us know how you get on on the school facebook or Twitter page. Show us some photos or drawings of your plants to show how you’ve observed over time.
Can’t wait that long? Here are some of our favourite time lapse videos of plants growing:
- bean seed
- watermelon with some super close ups of pollination
- beginnings of an acorn tree
- Animation of a tree over 140 years!
So what are you waiting for?…….