Year 1: Plants
This list consists of lesson plans, activities and interactive resources to support the teaching of plants in Year One. It contains tips on using the resources, suggestions for further use and background subject knowledge. Possible misconceptions are highlighted so that teachers may plan lessons to facilitate correct conceptual understanding. Designed to support the new curriculum programme of study it aims to cover many of the requirements for knowledge and understanding and working scientifically. The statutory requirements are that children are taught to:
• identify and name a variety of common wild and garden plants, including deciduous and evergreen trees
• identify and describe the basic structure of a variety of common flowering plants, including trees.
Visit the primary science webpage to access all lists.
Links and Resources
The activities within this pack help children learn how to identify and name some common UK plants, learn to recognise the parts of a plant and to discover the variety within plants. It contains a short story about the young Charles Darwin, and his interest in nature and a video which introduces Fiona, who works at Kew Gardens. She talks about her work there and introduces a variety of plants, talking about the role of each part of a plant.
A range of activities are provided which help to familiarise learners with the basic parts of a plant, including growing plants from seed and making models of a plant. Many cards, such as matching pairs, loop cards, taboo, splat, bingo are also included, to identify any misconceptions and develop understanding.
Making a model of a plant will help children become more familiar with the main parts of plant. Try asking them to create different kinds of plants such as: garden plants, wild plants, vegetables and trees. This will help them to see the great variety of plants and could lead to a great plant display of all kinds of plants.
What could be nicer than growing sunflowers, the seeds are nice and big for little fingers and the plants grow well and can be measured each week, which is a lovely link to mathematics.
Try observe the seeds and predicting what they may be and if they are living or non-living. Seeds could then be planted in Spring and children could make observations each week by drawing what they see. Many children think that to be alive something must move, observing the seeds as they grow into plants may help children see that even though the seeds did not move they are alive and just 'dormant' awaiting the conditions for growth.
Link to literacy by reading the story of The Sunflower as a class.
A wealth of activities relating to seeds and plants, use them in a pick and mix way depending on your requirements.
The Eating Plants activity sheet is a great way of ensuring children see that vegetables are plants. Children may think that vegetables are 'vegetables' and not part of the plant kingdom. Children could observe the vegetable plants and identify which part of the plant we eat. This activity could lead to children growing their own vegetables. Radishes are quick to grow and a great favourite of Peter Rabbit. Lettuce, carrots, beans or peas are also all great fun to grow with children.
The Sunflower jigsaw reinforces the main parts of a plant. Children can colour, cut out, re-order, stick back together and label the mixed up diagram of the parts of a sunflower.
Fun with Flowers lets children develop their observational skills whilst they learn about different flowers. Children could count the number of petals on different flowers and record this data.
This range of spotter sheets provide a really usesful guide for identifying plants and animals. Laminate them and get children used to using them when visiting local woodland. Included are sheets to identify mammals, birds, trees, flowers and fungi.
The sheet on flowers could be used following the short clip on meadows and wildflowers.
This book contains some great ideas for working with autumn leaves at primary level. General ideas for using trees and woods in science are detailed on pages 2-5 with the Autumn activities on pages13-21. Collect and sort leaves into different shapes or colours and try careful observation of the leaves with magnifying glasses.
Some further questions to investigate could be: Do some leaves decay faster than others? Which leaves fall the fatest? Do they fall faster on windy days?
Other activities for the different seasons are also contained in this book.
Use slides 1-7 of the presentation to introduce children to the main parts of plants. This could be followed up by a visit to a garden to find and identify flowering plants. One idea could be to take some photographs and have children label them back in class showing the different parts of the plant.
The first page of the worksheet asks children to label and colour the parts of a flowering plant.