WEEK 4
PLANTS

Activity 1: Grow plants from vegetable scraps (with no soil)!
Activity 2: Dandelion Expedition
Activity 3: Nature’s Number Bonds
Activity 4: Tree Identification and Leaf Rubbings
Activity 5: Amazing Alliteration
Activity 6: Make a Stop-motion Film
Activity 7: Make Phuldani Paper Flowers
Activity 8: What have I learnt?

GROW PLANTS FROM VEGETABLE SCRAPS (WITH NO SOIL)!

MATERIALS REQUIRED

vegetable scraps (you can use spring onion, celery, lettuce, potatoes, sweet potatoes, avocado, pineapple)

Go to BBC Bitesize and learn about what plants need to live by watching a video and trying the online activities below. If you’re KS1, follow this link.  If you’re KS2, follow this link.

Have you ever wanted to grow your own plants, but been worried that you don’t have seeds, soil or pots? Well do not fear, we’re going to try growing plants from bits of vegetables that are leftover when you cook!
*This is an ongoing project as it will take a few days to before roots/shoots appear*

Depending on what you have left over, go to one of these websites and follow the instructions. The basic idea is to put your scraps in water and to watch new roots and shoots grow. Each website describes putting your vegetables in water to get them started, before eventually potting them into soil. Don’t worry if you don’t have the means to re-pot them in soil – just watch them grow in water! It’s really exciting to watch the process and you can see what’s going on.

For instructions on growing spring onions (scallions), romaine lettuce, celery, onions, garlic or potatoes, go here.

For instructions on growing avocados, celery, potatoes, sweet potatoes, or pineapple, go here.

Make a chart so that you can document the progress of your vegetables and fill it in every couple of days. Remember that some of these will take a few days to get going, so be patient!

As you’re monitoring your plant, think about all the things that your plant needs to grow:

  • Does it sunlight?
  • Does it have enough water?
  • Does it have enough oxygen?
  • Is it warm enough?
  • Is it getting any nutrients?

DANDELION EXPEDITION

Join Marley the Cat at his School of Garden Magic at this Royal Botanic Garden of Edinburgh website.

First, click on ‘Learn all about Dandelions’ and open ‘The Dandelion Learning Box’. It will guide you through 6 short sections to help you learn about:

  • The dandelion family (which includes daisies and lettuces!)
  • The parts of a dandelion
  • The roots, fruits and flowers (yes… fruits!!)
  • How to identify a dandelion
  • The lifecycle of a dandelion
  • A short quiz to see how much you’ve learnt

Now that you know so much about these little flowers, it’s time to go on an expedition and see if you can identify some out in the real world. Go back to Marley’s website and click on ‘Dandelion Activities’.

Watch the video and then open the worksheet which will guide you along on your expedition.

If you can’t print the worksheet, just have it on your phone and write the answers on a piece of paper. The activities take you to explore and pick some dandelions in the park, before bringing one or two home to play with.
Did you know that the sap inside dandelions can be used to write secret messages that appear in the sun?!

Have fun exploring!!

NATURE’S NUMBER BONDS

MATERIALS REQUIRED

Paper, pen, flowers and leaves

Go out to the park and collect 10 of two different plants. For example, you could collect 10 small leaves and 10 daisies.
Divide a piece of paper into 10 and draw around each box so that you clearly have 10 spaces. Count the boxes together so that your child is sure that there are 10.

Adding Up
Next, fill the boxes with different combinations of your collected plants. For example, you might have 7 daisies and 3 leaves. Count the daisies, then count the leaves, before finally counting the total.
After you’ve counted, practise writing the sum: 7 + 3 = 10
Keep doing this until you have explored all of the combinations that add up to 10.
If your child is finding number bonds to 10 very easy, you could explore other numbers. Get a piece of coloured paper and cut squares that will cover some of the boxes so that you have a different total.
For example, you might cover three of the boxes so that the new total is 7. You could put 3 buttercups into the boxes and 4 leaves, before counting the total. Then write the sum: 3 + 4 = 7.

Taking away
You can also do this in reverse to practise subtraction. Fill your box with 10 daisies and then take 3 away. How many do you have left? After, write the sum: 10 – 3 = 7.

KS2 Extension – Go to this website and have a go at Uncle Raj’s birthday gardening puzzle. To do this activity, you could draw 3 overlapping circles and use daisies to represent the plants. See how many combinations you can come up with!

TREE IDENTIFICATION AND LEAF RUBBINGS

How many different types of trees are there in your local park?
Have a look at this worksheet created by The Woodland Trust which shows you how to identify some common species of tree in the UK by looking at their leaves.
If you don’t have a printer, follow the link and make it accessible on your phone.
Go to your local park and look at the leaves on the trees. See how many of those 13 trees you can find!
As you’re out, collect some leaves to take home to make leaf rubbings.
When you get home, follow this guide to make your leaf rubbings.
Label each of your rubbings so that you can remember which tree each leaf is from!

AMAZING ALLITERATION

MATERIALS REQUIRED

Paper, pen, flowers and leaves

First go to this BBC Bitesize webpage to learn about alliteration. Watch the video and try the quiz!
(Note – the same video and quiz appear on both the KS1 and KS2 section of BBC Bitesize, so they’re suitable for all ages)

Go out to your local park, look at the different plants and try to identify them. Say the name and think about the sounds. What letter do you think it starts with?

Now see if you can think of any adjectives (describing words) that start with the same letter. Do any of them describe the plant?

For example:

  • A lovely leaf
  • A daring daffodil
  • A beautiful beech tree

How many descriptions can you come up with using alliteration?

When you’ve finished, you could put all of your phrases together to make a poem.

MAKE A STOP-MOTION FILM

MATERIALS REQUIRED

Mobile phone, parts of plants (leaves, flowers, grass, etc.)

Download the app Stop Motion Studio onto your phone.
Here is the link to find it in the Google Play store and the link to find it in the App Store.

Gather up some plants (leaves, flowers, grass, etc.). You are going to make these move across the screen in your short movie.
You could say your alliteration phrases or your short poem (from activity 5) over the top!

Follow this step-by-step guide to make your first short film:
1. Open the App and click on ‘New Movie’
2. Click on the camera icon in the top-right hand corner
3. Take a picture
4. Move your plants very slightly and take another picture – try to keep your phone in roughly the same place
5. Move them again and take another
6. Repeat this process until you have taken at least 20 pictures
7. Click the < sign in the top-right hand corner and click the play sign (small triangle, 4th down on the right) to watch your movie
8. When you are happy with it, you can add sound over the top. Click on the first photo in your film then click on the microphone icon.
9. Press ‘record’ and speak. When you’ve finished click ‘stop recording’ (this is really important, otherwise your recording won’t save)

Note: Stop Motion Studios is a free app, however, you have to pay £0.99 if you want to save your movie onto your phone. It will give you the option once you are in the app and you pay through your Google Play or App Store account.

To save your video to your phone:
1. Click the < sign until your screen says ‘Stop Motion Studio’ at the top
2. Click ‘Select’ in the top-right hand corner
3. Click on your film so that is has a blue tick
4. Click on the square with an arrow (top-left, second icon)
5. Click ‘Export Movie’
6. Click ‘Save Video’

Show people your film!

Ask and answer questions as you read. For example, “how does this character feel?”, “what do you think is going to happen next?”, “which words describe this place/character”, etc.

MAKE PHULDANI PAPER FLOWERS

MATERIALS REQUIRED

paper (any will do – plain, magazines, newspaper, etc.), scissors, glue or sticky tape, colours to decorate (this is optional – you could use paints, crayons, colouring pencils, stickers, glitter, etc.)

Phuldani is a Bengali phrase which translates as “flowers in a vase.”

Watch this video and follow the steps to make your very own phuldani flowers.

WHAT HAVE I LEARNT?

Draw 3 shapes (stars, circles, blobs) on a piece of paper. Write the following headings in each one for your child:

– Things I’ve learnt this week
– My favourite activity from this week and why
– What do I still want to find out?

Help your child to write some thing in each one, or let them fill them in.