Now that spring is here, we are shifting our science studies to botany. In addition to our botany text, we are giving each boy their own 4’x8′ bed in our garden. The boys love to do anything that is hands-on, so what better way to learn the science of plants than to plant some and watch them grow?
We started off by getting a composition book for each boy, so they could write out their plans and take notes on the process. I had bought these last summer when all the school supplies were on sale, so I just pulled them out of the closet. The boys made tabs out of pieces of index cards to divide their books into 6 different sections: planning, starting seeds, veggies, flowers, herbs, and drawings. Having the boys divide them up this way gives them more ownership and involvement from the get-go, and makes them more likely to want to pull them out and fill in the information as they go.
We put several different kinds of seeds on plastic plates with a couple layers of paper towels under them. The boys drew a diagram of their plate with the seeds in their notebooks, so they could remember which seeds were what as they start to grow. Our intentions with this experiment are just to see how seeds germinate, and be able to see to see the roots. We are not intending these for the garden.
Joseph showing his seeds to his little sister:
We soaked the paper towels with water, then covered the whole thing with another plastic plate to hold in the moisture:
We expected that it would take several days before we noticed anything sprouting. However, a little over 24 hours later, we already have lettuce, radish, sunflower, pea, and watermelon seeds sprouting. The boys have been excitedly checking their plates periodically throughout the day to check for any changes.
Their next step is to plant their seed flats with seeds that we will actually transplant into their garden plots. They are very excited. Hopefully they will each get a great crop this year, and learn about how plants grow in the process!