Log field notes to track your seed’s growth.
Set Up Time: Under 5 min Activity Time: 10-15 min. Mess Level: Medium
What you need:
- This field notes template (you may want to print multiple copies)
- Crayons or pencils
- A large jar, ideally glass or see-through plastic
- Fast-growing seeds such as peas or beans
- Paper towels
- An old milk or juice carton to use as a watering can
- A ruler or measuring tape
How to Play:
- Print the field notes template (or use them as a template to create your own!)
- Ask your child to fill the jar with paper towels.
- Use your watering can to gently water the paper towels until they are just a little damp.
- Gently “plant” the seeds by pushing them into the damp paper towels. Be sure to position the seeds near the edge of the jar so you can see them grow!
- Using the printable decorations (or art supplies) decorate your watering can and add a tag with the plant’s name.
- Each day, encourage your child to observe what (if anything) has changed. Are the paper towels dry? If so, time for some water.
- As your child waters the plant, have a conversation about what they see. Measure any growth you observe and log field notes to track how your seed changes over time.
Tips for Playing:
- For Toddlers (2-3 years old): Encourage your toddler to observe the way the seeds change. When they notice growth, write or draw what they see! Use this opportunity to show your child how we use measuring to track growth.
- For Preschoolers (3-4 years old): Your preschooler might be ready to draw what they see themselves, even though you’ll probably still measure the seeds’ growth for them.
- For kids in early-elementary school (5+ years old): Encourage independence by letting your child measure and track the seeds’ growth by themselves. You can support them by asking about their observations.
Skill Building Together:
Think Like a Scientist
Encourage your child to explore the jars using their senses. How do the seeds change from one day to the next? How do the stems feel when they grow? Ask your child to make predictions about what they think will happen to the seeds over time.
This project is a great way to introduce new vocabulary words like root, stem, observation, and scientist.
Compare and Contrast
These seeds are growing in a very different way than other plants your child has seen. Talk to your child about the similarities and differences.