Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Have You Seen My Mother (spider plant)

As I am on a constant search to integrate my lessons as fully as possible, I took Mother's Day and science and mixed them together.  We started with a discussion of how animals have babies, and those babies look like their parents.  For instance a beagle puppy looks like its beagle mother.  We then started talking about plants and how baby plants or plants from seeds look like the parent plants.  We compared seeds and seed packets, observing how one seed will create a plant that looks like the plant which created the seed.  Then we took a spider plant baby and searched the school to find its mother.  We looked at beautiful geraniums, silk flowers, paper daisies, and then went outside and compared our baby to the leaves of tulips, daffodils, and hyacinths.  The kids compared not just the shape of the leaves, but the colors on the outside and inside, how the leaves stood up straight or curled, and the textures.  There were several close comparisons, but nothing quite matched enough.  Then a student spotted a strategically placed plant in the window of the hallway outside our classroom.  They *walked* inside and checked out the final plant to confirm that we indeed had found the mother plant.  Then everyone took a baby spider plant to care for and secure in soil.  These plants will be placed in gift bags the students decorate tomorrow to take home to a person in their life who nurtures them.  We have loosened the idea of Mother's Day, as many students are cared for by grandparents, relatives, or foster parents.  We want to honor all those who love us, regardless of the biological ties.