We are using My Father’s World – Learning God’s Story for Jenna’s school curriculum this year. Because we aren’t schooling with a traditional schedule, I switched the science plans around a little bit to take advantage of the seasonal activities. We are currently going through the Usborne Science With Plants book. I have to say that we have REALLY enjoyed these books! They are simple, have great pictures, and we love adding in plenty of hands-on experiments to go with our lessons.
The first lesson in the book is all about seeds. We did this lesson a few weeks ago when we were in the middle of planting our garden. Each of the kids has their own small raised garden bed and they got to choose which seeds they wanted to plant this year. Jenna chose watermelon and peas while Connor decided to plant pumpkins and peas. We had fun running down to the garden every day to check on the progress of their seeds!
In addition to gardening, we did a couple of experiments with beans. First, we split open a kidney bean to inspect under our microscope.
It was amazing to see the tiny little leaf inside of the bean! When looking at it with the naked eye, you can’t even tell that is a leaf.
Next, we experimented with growing kidney beans. We lined a jar with paper towels and a little water, then we put dried kidney beans next to the glass, half-way up the jar.
I made a chart for Jenna in her science notebook (a spiral bound notebook with blank pages), and she recorded the growth progress. We don’t do school every day, so that is why some days are skipped on the chart.
Once the bean had established some roots, we planted it in potting soil and left it in the kitchen window to grow.
This plant is in a different jar because it was Connor’s experiment. I always have him join us when we read the science book and do the experiments. While he doesn’t grasp the concepts yet, I feel like it’s good school practice for him.
Once the plants had grown enough to see all of the parts, I had Jenna draw a diagram in her science journal and label each of the parts. (I helped with the spelling for this page)
The experiments were all very simple, and I already had all of the supplies we needed on hand, so there was no added expense! There were a few more experiments in the book that had to do with the plant growing, but we just read the lessons and skipped the hands-on part.