Theme for April – Beans and Eggs

Springtime! Flowers bloom, gardens grow, and baby critters are found everywhere. What is the science of all of this? Time to investigate beans and eggs!

All school children sooner or later sprout something. Beans, avocado seeds, and Chia seeds are three good starters. Beans and Chia seeds sprout quickly. The avocado seed takes longer, but will produce a bigger plant.

beanswater

Soaking beans in water is the first step. Bottles made it easy to see how a full bottle of beans can hold more water than it looks like. Beans should be moved to a more open container to absorb the water or they will get stuck (We learned that the hard way).

peelbeans

Allow students to peel the beans and look for the bean “germ”. They will be amazed at how small a plant is in the beginning.

beansgerm

This hands on experience can be used as a journaling event. Seeds can be planted in a root farm to let students view their growth. Charts can be kept as the plant grows. Have fun growing beans!

The Life of a Caterpillar

The life of a caterpillar is led by one simple task: EAT! They hatch out from an egg smaller than a grain of rice and have about a week to grow to the full caterpillar size. They will then have to find a safe place to attach themselves, become a chrysalis, and hang around for several weeks until they are ready to become a butterfly. It is one of the most amazing things to see first-hand. It is a great way to welcome spring if you can get your hands on some caterpillars!

I brought in some caterpillars from my flower garden and was surprised to hear all the “ewws” and “yuckies” coming from my preschool students. Yes, they all knew that a butterfly came from a caterpillar, but most thought the creatures in the new habitat were bad worms.
caterpillar

Gulf Fritillary Caterpillars

Now, we count the days they are eating and hope to see a chrysalis soon. That will only lead to more counting as we wait for a butterfly, but counting is good!

The Lion and the Lamb

The saying goes:  March comes in like a lion, and goes out like a lamb.  March is a month that USUALLY starts with cold, unpleasant weather, but ends mild and maybe even warm. I am wondering March is a little confused this year?  March certainly seemed to come in like a…lamb?  Temperatures might have been a little chilly, but hey, it was March!  The lion part is now tagging along into April with record COLD temperatures and snow storms. I want to talk to THAT groundhog about his promise of an early spring, but that is a whole different story!

Spring Is Near…

Pennsylvania rejoiced this year as their groundhog, Punxsutawney Phil, predicted an early spring. Thousands of years ago people in the Europe area of Germany believed that the badger could predict the coming of spring. When the first German immigrants settled in Pennsylvania they could not find a badger, so they settled for a groundhog.  Groundhog or badger…
I am hoping for spring ASAP!