Life Science Curriculum K-7

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Submitted by: Eric Benton

Position: N/A

Institution: Azusa Pacific University

Title of Experiment:Planting a Seed

Materials Needed:

Lima beans
large transparent container
potting soil
Watering can or cup
transparent cups and paper towels.

Scientific Background of Experiment:

 For a seed to germinate they need sunlight, soil, and water. When a seed is planted in wet soil, the seed absorbs the water or moisture that surrounds it. When the absorption of water occurs this causes the young plant or embryo inside to begin growing. As the growing plant grows it needs nourishment. It gets that nourishment or food from the seed leaves which are also known as cotyledons. As the plant begins to mature a little more a tiny root begins to descend from the bottom of the seed. This root then begins to absorb water from the soil. The water that is in the soil may have come from rain or someone watering the plant. About the same time as the root descends into the soil, a tiny stem begins to push upward through the soil. As the stem grows its leaves begin to make food through the process of photosynthesis. This enables the plant to survive and roproduce.


 Previous to starting this experiment in class one may want to soak a lima bean in a bowl of water overnight. Then present the soaked lima bean along with a dry lima bean to the class. Explain to them that a lima bean is a type of seed and the soaked one is bigger and softer because it absorbed water. One can then let help the children split the bean in two so they can see the little plant inside the seed leaves. Then tell them they will learn how to make it grow.

For advanced preparation of the project: 2 weeks before the project get and a see through container and fill it with 6 to 8 inches of soil. Every three days place 4 lima beans between the container and the soil. Keep the soil moist and at the end of two weeks your result should be plants in different stages of growth. Use these different stages to explain how a plant embryo grows. Also make sure that the children understand that the plants need water, soil, and sunlight to grow.

The kids turn: Now give each child a transparent cup, three lima beans, and a paper towel. On each cup write the child's name. Show the children how to place the towel in the transparent cup and poor about 1 inch of water on it. You should then be able to see the seed begin to grow. Once the seed begins to get a root let the children put soil in their containers an carefully plant their seeds. The children should now be able to explain to how a plant grows and what is needed in the process.

Misc. Helpful Information/ Hints/ Suggestions:

You may want to help the kids plant the seeds so they do not kill the plant.