Monday, April 14, 2008

Math in the Garden Class

I am doing a math in the garden class with the 6 1st graders in our small homeschool group. Today was the first class... and omgoodness... it was a bit scattered, but SO much fun! The kids had a total blast making their journals and planting their seeds. I sent them home with basic, but very loose instructions so they could continue their observations throughout the 5 weeks between the two classes.

First, we made notebooks:

These are made with a cardstock front and back, and on the back, there is a 7 inch ruler. The stick is held there with one rubberband that stretches the length of notebook that comes thogugh two holes punched in through the book. It is one of the cuter designs for a seasonal notebook that I have seen so far.

Here is Cyan with her notebook. She is also holding the leaves that we measured with our rulers that are on the back of the notebooks.

Then we planted the kids own mini-gardens:

Every one of the kids were completely thrilled with this. Even Cyan, who has done it a million times before. There is something about doing it with your friends that just brings out the fun.

The second part of this class, that isn't happening for 5 weeks, we will pull up all the seeds except for the sunflower and parsley. We will be measuring out the roots of these plants, and talking about the contrast between above the soil, and below. As we planted today, we talked a bit about the art of planting seeds. How the tiny ones need to be barely in a depression in the soil, but the larger ones need to be deeper down, so they each get the right amount of sun, water, and protection. About how seeds are like babies. After this talk, the smaller the seeds got, the louder the girls would exclaim as I pulled them out. "And here is some carrot seeds... the smallest seeds of all" and all of the girls would "Awwwww!" like they were looking at a newborn kitten. It was completely adorable!

It was great! And I can't wait for the second part of the class after they have made all their observations, and written in the notebooks we made a little bit. It will be SO much fun to graph the seeds growth (and be able to do it very loosely, by whatever these kids have wanted to document) and pull them up and see full sized radish, and half sized carrots. Just so much fun! It was a great class. :)

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