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Welcome to the Sustainability Lesson Clearinghouse

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Sustainability Lesson Clearinghouse


Lesson Description:
AdoptAPlantIcon Each child will choose a plant in the garden and draw what they see. This will be done once a week throughout the unit so that changes can be seen in the illustrations.

Eco-fact: some types of bamboo can grow nearly a meter a day.

1. before heading out to the garden, the students should gather together and talk about what might be seen there. For example, what do they expect the plant to look like? Also, if this isn’t the first visit, they should look back at the picture from the last visit and talk about what might be different this time.

2. Children will take their garden journal, pencil, and coloring tools out to the garden. Each kid will choose a plant to watch over the weeks to come. Students should record the date of each observation. Students can work individually, in pairs or small teams.

3. Once they choose a plant, each child should sit by it and draw what they observe. Things to bring attention to that could be included in drawings are:
  • shape of leaves
  • number of leaves
  • size of stem, buds, leaves, etc
  • what parts of the plant can or can’t be seen
  • colors

4. At the end of the visits, students can talk about the changes they saw throughout the observations, share their drawings, and compare plants observed by group members.

- before planting, students can prepare for this by choosing a vegetable seed to plant and marking it as “theirs” with a popsicle stick labeled with his or her name.
- older students can then sit next to their plants, and draw/write what they observe. plants should be measured and heights recorded in garden journal. Pictures should be labeled and sentences or captions added to include detailed information about what is observed. Information such as how tall the plant is should be recorded as well so that the observation is as complete as possible. Students should record the date of each observation. Students can predict how tall their plant will be in the next observation and record it in their garden journal.

- at each visit to the plant, the students can take a ruler and measure its height. This can be recorded in their garden journal and later used to graph the growth of the plant.
- have students draw the life cycle stages of their adopted plant. Draw each stage (seed, sprout, mature plant, flowering plant, fruiting plant, new seeds) on a separate piece of paper. Mix up the drawings and have other students arrange the stages in sequential order. Drawings can be bound together to form a flip book.
- students can act out the stages of the plant life cycle (seed, sprout, mature plant, flowering plant, fruiting plant, new seeds).
Lesson Type:
  • Discussion
  • Experiment

Sustainability Topic:
  • Ecosystems
  • Gardening

GEF Program Category:
  • Green Thumb Challenge

Materials Needed:
  •  garden journals
  • pencils
  • coloring tools such as crayons and colored pencils
  • garden

School or Group:
Contact Email:
Located in: Science

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