We planted bean plants back in September, but as we approach Spring, many teachers are teaching the plant life cycle and parts of a plants now, so I thought I’d share the method I used, so maybe you can use it too! Many of you have probably planted beans in zip-lock bags at one time or another. It’s a great way to do it- doesn’t take up much space and they grow really quickly. I did this when I was in school! But, our class didn’t use zip-lock bags…
We used CD cases! We collected about 12 CD cases so that there would be enough for everyone to share with a partner. Then we used potting soil to plant our beans.
Watering the bean:
Watching it grow!
Measuring its growth:
Labeling the parts of the plant:
- Any old bean should do, but lima beans are most commonly used. Just a bag from the grocery store should do!
- The hinges of the CD case should be at the top. That way you can stand them up and dirt won’t fall out. Also this leaves a nice hole at the top for watering the plants with droppers. I had to borrow our droppers, but here is a pack of 100 for just over $5!
- Plant your bean high in the soil. If you plant it toward the bottom the roots will grow out the bottom!
- Tape the bottom shut. This will keep roots from growing out the bottom, and curious fingers from opening the case.
- Use masking tape and permanent markers to label whose plant is whose.
- Around day 5 or so I untaped the cases overnight so that they could have a little bit of space to grow. I taped them back in the morning. By day 7 or so, you will be ready to label your plants. We used paint pens.
- Plant your bean with the concave side down. It should resemble the letter “n,” not the letter “u.” I didn’t tell my kids this. I just let them discover it… which was a nice learning experience. Just depends on which way you’d rather teach it.
To record our observations we used this sheet from Green Education Foundation.