This week required a bit of preparation.
Starting a week before, I soaked mung beans overnight, rinsed them and put them in a plastic cup, with a sheet of kitchen towel held over the top with an elastic band. I kept my cups in a cupboard, rinsing them once a day to stop them rotting. I started a new cup sprouting every day, so that I had a sequence of seven cups of beans at various stages of germination for the children to look at.
Sprouting Mung Beans Week
Life Cycle of Plants
Life cycle of a plant paper plates.
I gave the children two paper plates and a split pin each. On one paper plates they drew a seed being planted, sprouting, a flower growing, a new seed being produced.
Put plant life cycle pictures in order.
Has anyone grown plants? Talk a bit about what they saw.
Explain that we are going to sprout mung beans, find that on the plant life cycle.
Show the ‘ones we planted earlier’ beans and put them in order: Day 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7.
Rinse mung beans, put them in a plastic cup, put lid on cup.
Gather Together for the Conclusion:
Dissect a flower together.
I cut up a rose and talked the children through the parts, sticking them to white paper and labeling the stem, leaf, petal, stigma and anther.
We passed the flower around and noticed the stickiness of the stigma, and talked about why it might be sticky (so pollen sticks to it).
Middly made a big poster at home, showing the parts of a flower, we compared this to what we could see.
We used post it notes to label the parts of the flower.
Break for drink and snack
I set out four buckets, each holding a selection of coloured building blocks, all the reds in one bucket, the blues in another etc.
I asked the children to pretend to be pollinating animals (they picked bees, butterflies, moths and bats). The children ran around the buckets picking up the blocks and dropping them into other buckets.
After a few minutes, I asked the children to stop and we looked at what had happened to the buckets. Some buckets had a mixture of coloured blocks – these would have been fertilised plants. Other buckets had no blocks left – just as some plants might not be successfully fertilised by animals. Some blocks ended up on the floor, just as not all pollen picked up by animals reaches another flower.
The children used our big poster and my example to dissect their own flowers.