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As Maria Montessori said, “Nothing should be given to the brain that is not first given to the hand”. We embrace hands-on learning in our Montessori homeschool classroom. I use every opportunity to make learning practical. My 4-yo Blossom told me that she would like to plant something in our garden.
Truth be told at this stage our garden is non-existent, however, we started looking into the life cycle of the plant and learn about seed germination. The whole Plant Unit I plan contains several topics: seed germination, parts of the seed, parts of a plant, life cycle of a plant, and needs of the plant.
Today I am going to share with you hands-on simple science experiments we conducted that included planting seeds, observing the process of seed germination, the life cycle of a plant.
Teaching preschooler sequencing process of seed germination is great for developing their logical thinking. Along with that, they pick up new vocabulary: germination, seed, roots, shoot, seedling.
To observe seed germination and to create a hands-on science experience, we gathered various types of seeds – beans, corn, herbs, and flower bulbs. We planted them using different methods to make it more engaging, which also allowed the child to make comparisons, observe, and learn to pay attention to details.
Conducting our experiment, we
- planted bean and corn seeds into a small clear jar by placing a couple of crunched paper towels and pouring some water inside to make it wet. It created a moist environment for the seeds to start germinating. This allowed the perfect opportunity for the child to see clearly every stage of the process.
- planted bean and corn seeds into a jar with soil – Blossom filled a small jar with soil, watered it and planted seeds. There were at least 4-5 bean seeds. Some seeds took longer to germinate. After about 7 days we scooped them out and had a close look. We had one example of each part of the transformation – from seed to seedling. So cool, ah! This was wonderful to use for match-up hands-on activity later.
- planted Daffodil bulbs into a glass vase. Blossom found shells and marbles to place on the bottom and pushed bulbs to rest on them allowing space for roots to grow.
- planted herbs into an ice-block container. This was to compare the sizes of various seeds and practice fine motor skills.
Every aspect of the learning process incorporated certain skills for little hands to practice aside from doing an actual job of planting seeds, like
- water pouring – coordination skills
- spreading small seeds along the surface of the soil – fine motor practice
I often emphasize the importance of doing Montessori work that requires a few days for children to complete. It teaches them a very important lesson – quality takes time to achieve. It also teaches them to be patient and takes the excitement of seeing the final result to a whole new level.
It took about 5-7 days for seeds to start to germinate and grow into a seedling. Daffodil bulbs are still in the process of growing and every day there is significant progress that can be observed.
This is a perfect opportunity for children to learn parts of a plant since it takes a while for the plant to grow from bulb to flower, so the child learns each part in the process by repeating it every time they see it.
I always encourage Blossom to do some form of reflection after we explore a unit. This time we used pantomime to do a “seed dance” – we pretended to be a seed that pushes roots down and little shoot up through the soil and transforms into a little seedling. She also did a recording of her observation in the form of a drawing.
After that, we are going to learn about the Lifecycle of a plant using printables I made. You can check them out here.
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Must-Read Books About Nature Learning and Living
Nature Journal Children's Activity Book with Prompts I see I wonder I create
Visual Storytelling Prompts with Nature | Drawing, Creative Writing
Animals of the Seven Continents - Nomenclature and Information Cards
Nature Curriculum in Cards Ever Growing Bundle
Insects and Crawling Creatures Preschool Pack
Biomes of the World - Nature Curriculum in Cards - Montessori
Major Biomes of the World is a set of 3-part cards, information posters, and worksheets for students to learn about the major biomes of the world. It includes a map, 3-part card activities, descriptions, follow-up coloring, handwriting, and sorting activities.
Three Types of Rocks Sort: Igneous, Sedimentary, Metamorphic
Three-part cards and sorting activity with three major groups of rocks – Igneous, Sedimentary, Metamorphic. Rocks are often a great point of interest for lower elementary students. It is easily translated into a hands-on experience for children who enjoy looking up various types of rocks and learning their origin and proper name pronunciation.
Types of Clouds Printable - Nature Curriculum in Cards
Types of Clouds – 3-part card activity and handwriting sheets.
Seasons in Nature Printable - Nature Curriculum in Cards
Seasons in Nature Printable contains:
4 work mats for sorting
24 picture cards for sorting (6 for each of the seasons)
Sun and Earth rotation poster to place in the middle
British and American versions
Natural Wonders of the Continents Montessori Sorting Cards
Montessori Nature Printable with 49 sorting cards featuring real photos of the wonders of nature.
Fascinating and most incredible places on earth categorized by location – the seven continents.
2D Shapes in Nature Printable - Nature Curriculum in Cards - Montessori
2D Shapes in Nature matching activity and handwriting sheets.
Montessori Printable for Preschool Children Colours in Nature
Montessori-inspired printable for preschool children to learn visual discrimination of the colors using gorgeous photographs of nature. Photographs of the natural world – 11 different colors;
Montessori Nature Printables
Patterns in Nature cards for sorting out 10 different categories of patterns found in nature: clouds, water, plants, animals, reflections, landscapes, corals, ice and snow, rocks, and trees.
Birds and Their Eggs Three-Part Nomenclature Cards
The printable features photos of birds and eggs. Each card set comes with a photo of a bird + a label, a label card, and a photo card of eggs including a picture of the bird that laid them. This makes it easier for children to connect the right picture of eggs to the right bird without assistance.
Plant Life Cycle - Montessori Nature Printables
This printable is perfect to include in your Spring and Summer unit and present to the students before they start planting seeds in the garden.
Honey Bee Life Cycle - Nature Curriculum in Cards
Two sets of Honey Bee Life Cycle activities with student worksheets and Honey Bee 3-part Cards
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This unique nature reference book has a fun, new approach that teaches children about nature through objects. It includes:
• More than 100 amazing objects that you can find in nature made by geological processes, or by plants and animals.
• Four chapters: Animals; Plants, Fungi and Algae; Minerals and Rocks; and Made by Nature.
• Illustrated diagrams that support understanding.
• Large, detailed photographs of truly fascinating objects.
• Eye-catching jacket finishes: gold foil, holographic foil and metallic gold edges.
Kids Nature Journal Drawing Sketchbook
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Backpack Explorer: On the Nature Trail: What Will You Find?
Jump-start curiosity with this take-along field guide for children ages 4 to 8. From worms, birds, and spiders to trees, flowers, and clouds, young explorers learn what to look and listen for wherever they are — whether in a nature preserve, an urban park, or a suburban backyard. Seek-and-find lists, on-the-trail art projects, and discovery games get kids engaged in hands-on learning about nature, and a real pull-out magnifying glass helps them get a close-up glimpse of leaf veins, seed pods, and tiny insects. Filled with activities, checklists, and stickers, this interactive nature guide belongs in every kid’s backpack.
Nature Anatomy: The Curious Parts and Pieces of the Natural World
See the world in a whole new way! Acclaimed illustrator Julia Rothman combines art and science in this exciting and educational guide to the structure, function, and personality of the natural world. Explore the anatomy of a jellyfish, the inside of a volcano, monarch butterfly migration, how sunsets work, and much more. Rothman’s whimsical illustrations are paired with interactive activities that encourage curiosity and inspire you to look more closely at the world all around you.
My First Nature Book: All About the Natural World for Kids
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Awesome Outdoor Science Experiments for Kids
Kids are full of big questions like “What makes plants grow?” or “Why does the moon change shape in the sky?”. Awesome Outdoor Experiments for Kids can help them find the answers! It’s a treasure trove of outdoor adventures, with more than 50 fun experiments that show kids science in action as they play outside.
National Geographic Book of Nature Poetry
When words in verse are paired with the awesomeness of nature, something magical happens! Beloved former U.S. Poet Laureate J. Patrick Lewis curates an exuberant poetic celebration of the natural world in this stellar collection of nature poems. From trickling streams to deafening thrunderstorms to soaring mountains, discover majestic photography perfectly paired with contemporary (such as Billy Collins), classics (such as Robert Frost), and never-before-published works.
Adventure Girls!: Crafts and Activities for Curious, Creative, Courageous Girls
Girls can do anything, and Adventure Girls! proves it! Packed with exciting activities and crafts for girls (ages 6 to 12), this book inspires young adventurers to be curious, innovative, and bold. From stargazing and animal tracking to making a pinhole camera and building a shadow theater, Adventure Girls! is not one of your typical craft books.
The Backyard Bug Book for Kids
Crawl into the wonderful world of bugs—a fun photographic adventure for kids ages 3 to 5
Take your child on an educational adventure bursting with the kinds of colorful photographs you need in bug books for kids.
The Backyard Bug Book for Kids has everything you’d want in bug books for kids: a story, pictures, and activities combined. Introduce your little one to the types of bugs they’re likely to see during their day, then help them remember what they’ve learned with fun, on-the-page challenges.
Curious Kids Nature Guide: Explore the Amazing Outdoors of the Pacific Northwest
Filled with fun facts and 100 full-color, beautiful, and scientifically accurate illustrations, this nature guide will inspire kids to go outdoors and discover the natural wonders of the Pacific Northwest.
Did you know that baby raccoons are smaller than a bar of soap? Or that salmon smell using little pits in the front of their eyes? Curious Kids Nature Guide is filled with full-color illustrations and fun facts about the natural wonders of the Pacific Northwest, encouraging kids to discover and explore nature in their own backyards and beyond.
The Organic Artist for Kids: A DIY Guide to Making Your Own Eco-Friendly Art Supplies from Nature
Immersed in the natural world, The Organic Artist for Kids inspires creativity by connecting kids and their adults to our wilderness roots.
In addition to offering a wide variety of fun, collaborative projects using nature as a source for art supplies and inspiration, this book also introduces the concepts of awareness and perception that are fundamental to the creative process.
Outdoor Kids in an Inside World
In the era of screens and devices, the average American spends 90 percent of their time indoors, and children are no exception. Not only does this phenomenon have consequences for kids’ physical and mental health, it jeopardizes their ability to understand and engage with anything beyond the built environment.
Exploring Nature Journal for Kids
Wild creatures, cloud formations, plant habitats, and more―nature is full of wonders to behold and explore! In this nature journal, young naturalists will get all of the guidance they need to study and record their experiences of the natural world.
The Nature Connection: An Outdoor Workbook for Kids, Families, and Classrooms
Clare Walker Leslie shows kids how to experience nature with all five senses, whether they live in the countryside, a major city, or somewhere in between. Guiding children through inspiring activities like sketching wildlife, observing constellations, collecting leaves, keeping a weather journal, and watching bird migrations, The Nature Connection encourages kids to engage with the world outside and promotes a lifelong love of nature.
50 Things To See With A Telescope - Kids: A Constellation Focused Approach
From the author of the bestselling book 50 Things to See with a Small Telescope, this colorful edition explores the constellations with young readers, guiding them to dozens of galaxies, nebulae, and star clusters. Every page features a helpful “telescope view”, showing exactly how objects appear through a small telescope or binoculars.
Nature Anatomy Activities for Kids: Fun, Hands-On Learning
Get ready to explore the sky above, the ground below, and all the plants and creatures in between! Made just for kids, this nature anatomy book teaches you about the incredible forces and living things that exist in nature.
Nature All Around: Plants
Balancing child-friendly facts with colorful illustrations, this perfect introduction to plants is sure to inspire the budding naturalist in every child. From crowded cities to open prairies, deserts to wetlands, plants grow everywhere!
This comprehensive introduction will open children's eyes to the plants that surround them every day and how important they are to life on our planet. It covers the basics of plants, such as their parts, life cycles and growing zones.
The Tree Book for Kids and Their Grown-Ups
The birds, the bees, the flowers and the…TREES! How do trees grow? Why do leaves change? What kind of tree is that? The acclaimed Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s guide answers all kids’ (and their parents’) tree-related questions in an easy-to-understand way. It features 33 different trees that grow in North America, from rural Georgia to the streets of New York City to the California suburbs.
Survivor Kid: A Practical Guide to Wilderness Survival
Anyone can get lost while camping or on a hike and Survivor Kid teaches young adventurers the survival skills they need if they ever find themselves lost or in a dangerous situation in the wild. Written by a search and rescue professional and lifelong camper, it’s filled with safe and practical advice on building shelters and fires, signaling for help, finding water and food, dealing with dangerous animals, learning how to navigate, and avoiding injuries in the wilderness.
Mrs. Peanuckle's Hiking Alphabet
With playful text, bright illustrations, and sturdy pages, Mrs. Peanuckle's alphabet books will engage toddlers, and take them on an alphabet adventure through the natural world!
Explore the wondrous world of hiking while learning the ABCs with Mrs. Peanuckle!
Mrs. Peanuckle takes on the outdoors and shares all her favorite animals, plants, and more in her latest tour of the ABCs!
3 thoughts on “Hands-on Learning About Plants In Our Montessori Classroom”
Please what is in that big glass jar in top? It seems to have very strong root and stem (bigger than bean) but I don’t recognize the leafs to identify it.
Thank you for stopping by, Hana!
These I believe were daffodil bulbs.
Such fun ideas! Thanks for sharing them!
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