Students consider what trees and other plants need to grow and then reflect on questions about how plants grow.
- Small tree or other plant in a pot
- Old magazines to cut up (optional)
- Paper or journals
- Crayons or colored pencils
- Gather the materials.
Doing the Activity
- Begin by having students label the top of a paper or journal page with “What My Body Needs to Grow.” Then have students draw, write, or cut out pictures from magazines to illustrate their ideas. Have students share their ideas about what people need to grow.
- Show students the potted tree or plant and ask them what they would do to care for the plant. Have them label the back of the paper or another journal page with “What Plants Need to Grow.” Have students share their ideas about what plants need to grow.
- Lead a discussion about what trees and other plants need to live. Consider using collaborative discussion strategies for leading the discussion. Explore such questions as:
- What do you think trees and other plants need to grow?
- How are your body’s needs the same as and different from plants’ needs?
- (For each thing that students name) How do you know that trees and other plants need this? What evidence do you have to support your idea?
- How do you think we could test our ideas to see if they’re correct?
- What other questions do you have about trees that you’d like to explore? (Students’ questions might include: Does a tree need sunlight to live? How much sunlight does a tree need? Why do tree leaves change colors? Why do some trees lose their leaves in winter?)
Remember to visit the Enrich tab for recommended children’s books that support the science concepts covered in this activity.