Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Easy Springtime Science Experiments for Nannies and Au Pairs

In What Direction Do Seeds Grow?

It doesn't take much to actively engage children in fun springtime learning activities. Here is an easy science experiment to do with the children in their home.

You Will Need:
Two wide-mouth jars or clear containers
A piece of blotting paper long enough to line the inside of the jars
Paper towels

  1. Soak the beans overnight in water.
  2. Place the blotting paper snugly around the inside of each jar.
  3. Stuff crumpled paper towel in the middle of the jars, then fill them with water and wait until the paper towel absorbs as much of the water as it can.
  4. Pour off the excess water.
  5. Push a few of the beans in different positions (horizontal, diagonal, vertical) between the blotting paper and the glass in each jar. Keep them spaced apart and near the top of the jars.
  6. Have the children draw diagrams of the jars and the seeds and draw their predictions of how they think they will grow.
  7. Keep the jars out of direct sunlight and watch the seeds grow. Water the paper towels quite regularly so the seeds will keep moist.
  8. Once the seedlings have reached about an inch over the jars (about a week), lay one of the jars on its side.
  9. Have the kids draw diagrams of the jars and the seeds and draw their predictions of how they think they will grow now.
  10. In a few days have the children draw what happens. The stems of the seedlings should have bent so they could continue to grow upwards. Who predicted correctly? Why did this happen? What may be some reasons?

Plants have growth hormones that respond to the Earth's gravitational pull. This causes roots to always grow down and stems to always grow up. This is called geotropism.


Michelle said...

Have I said lately how great a resource this blog is for nannies? Only one I check each and everyday. Thanks for these ideas.

As author of this blog has said before parents, children and nannies are happier when activily engaging kids in learning activities. This can be done in their bedrooms without parents being disturbed by simple project. A priceless nanny will do more than watch soap operas and enjoy hands on fun with kids.

AuPairDebbie said...

Great I will try it!

sumon220 said...

what a great idea just like it.