Today we will be creating some beautiful nature art and explore the plants around us, just as everything begins to bloom for spring! While we are collecting plants to create our works of art, we will also learn about the plants we collect from, as well as any creatures we may see while we are exploring.
What You Will Need
flowers and leaves picked from garden/walk
drawing paper (printer paper is okay, but a thicker paper will work better)
Today, we will focus on what living things need to live, and what differences in plants we can see when we investigate them before picking our flowers.
If your child is in Grade 1, the main focus is on the characteristics of the plants.
If your child is in Grade 2, the main focus is on the insects and animals they see while picking the flowers.
If your child is in Grade 3, the main focus is the human impact on plants and other life systems, as well as comparing characteristics of plants.
(See the questions and curriculum expectations below for ideas of questions to ask your child while they explore)
Watch the video below to start off!
Start with your collection of flowers, your paper, hammer, and wax paper.
Lay out all your flowers on your paper face down.
Cover your flowers with wax paper and press firmly into place with your hands.
Use your hammer to hammer all your flowers into the paper! Don't hammer too much on the centers of your flowers, as you will get a lot of pollen and moisture on your paper.
Let the flowers dry on the paper, then gently brush off with your fingers. When you're finished, you should have something like this! You could also continue to decorate your page. I used some fine tip markers to outline my flowers and add some detail, which was a lot of fun!
Questions and Activities
What do you know about what plants need to live? Do you think the flowers you picked had these things? What can you see on the plant that would help it get these things?
What differences can you see in the plants you investigated?
Did you see any bugs or other creatures while you were picking flowers? What things were the same about the creatures you noticed? What things were different?
How can we ensure that our exploration doesn't harm the plants? What should we do to cause as little harm as possible?
Take a picture of one of the plants you take a flower from. Try to label all the parts of the flower (see additional resources for an example).
Books about plants available on Overdrive with your library card:
A full, ready to teach lesson about Characteristics of Living things: https://www.worldbookonline.com/sciencepower/lesson?lessonid=sci1-characters-840015
A full, ready-to-teach lesson about Plants: https://www.worldbookonline.com/sciencepower/lesson?lessonid=sci1-plants-840024
More tips for pressing plants: https://www.worldbookonline.com/activitycorner/project?id=cr1953087
Creating a sun catcher with your pressed plants: https://www.worldbookonline.com/activitycorner/project?id=cr2246103
Grade 1 Understanding Life Systems: 2.2 investigate and compare the basic needs of humans and other living things, including the need for air, water, food, warmth, and space, using a variety of methods and resources; 2.3 investigate and compare the physical characteristics of a variety of plants and animals, including humans; 2.4 investigate the physical characteristics of plants(e.g., basic parts, size, shape, colour) and explain how they help the plant meet its basic needs
Grade 2 Understanding Life Systems: 2.2 observe and compare the physical characteristics (e.g., fur or feathers; two legs or no legs) and the behavioural characteristics (e.g., predator or prey)of a variety of animals, including insects, using student-generated questions and a variety of methods and resources.
Grade 3 Understanding Life Systems: 1.1 assess ways in which plants are important to humans and other living things, taking different points of view into consideration (e.g., the point of view of home builders, gardeners, nursery owners, vegetarians), and suggest ways in which humans can protect plants; 1.2 assess the impact of different human activities on plants, and list personal actions they can engage in to