Without seeds there is no new life. I honestly believe that growing a plant or tree is truly magical and fascinating to watch. The whole process is so exciting, from getting the seed, placing it in the dirt, watering it, and watching it grow to produce more seeds.
The seed process
Look who joined us while we were learning the seed growing process. Yes, I’m holding a California Quail. We have been taking our school outdoors these past two weeks. As we were busy painting, learning, and molding we heard a loud sound and saw a hawk trying to attack the California Quail. Because we got up to see what the noise was all about we had scared the hawk away. The quail sat with us for 10 minutes and then he flew away once the hawk was out of sight.
There are two main groups of seeds: monocots and dicots. The embryo’s first meal is its seed leaves. If a seed has one leaf then it’s called monocot and if the seed has two leaves then it’s called dicots. Sunflower seeds have two leaves and corn seeds have one.
Every seed has 3 things: a seed coat, embryo, and food tissue.
We received an amazing seed process set from Montessori Shop (www.montessorishop.co.nz/)
Girls made replicas of the seed process by using beeswax molding from Bella Luna Toys (instashop.co/bellalunatoys).
We placed some sunflower seeds in a zip lock bag and added a wet paper towel. This is simple and easy to do especially if you will be out of town like we were for a few days. When we came back our sunflowers had germinated and had roots and a stem. The first true leaves had not yet emerged.
Have you ever watched a seed dance? Would you like to dance with a seed? Then you’d love this experiment.
All you need is a jar, ¼ cups of vinegar, 2 tablespoons of baking soda, handful of un-popcorn kernels, 1 cup of water, and an empty bowl.
Place the glass in the center of your bowl. Add your corn kernels. Add water and watch what happens. Then add vinegar. The last step you’ll want to add is baking soda. Now let the dancing party began.
When baking soda hits vinegar acid is created, the acid creates bubbles and then the bubbles stick to the corn. The corn rises to the top then when the bubble pops the corn drops.
Fun with Popcorn
Have you ever asked yourself why a corn kernel is the only seed that can be turned into popcorn? It has to do with two important factors: it has a super hard shell and each seed contains a small amount of water in them. Corn is a monocot.
Corn contains water and when it is cooking it builds steam and the steam builds pressure until it pops. When the shell breaks we have popcorn. The white part of the popcorn is the endosperm this is what provides energy for the embryo. The end piece of the popcorn that is hard and often times gets stuck in our teeth is the pericarp (the hard seed coat).
All you need to make popcorn is a frying pan, lid, un-popped popcorn kernels, oil, butter, and seasoning (cinnamon or barbeque). Add some oil to the frying pan and place un-popped popcorn kernels. Make sure the lid is on or else you’ll have a big mess. Once the popcorn has popped then add some melted butter and seasoning to it.
We really enjoyed gathering all the seeds that we had so that we could open and examine them closer. Did you know that a seed as small as a freckle can grow into the world’s largest tree? Yep, Redwoods seeds are so small but the tree so tall. The smallest seed is the orchid seed and the largest is the coco de mer palm. It can weigh up to 60 pounds.
How Seeds Travel
Seeds need a place to grow and majority of the seeds sprout far from their parent plants. Three ways seeds can travel: the wind can blow it to some place, a seed can float in water, or it can land on an animals fur.
If a seed gets stuck in a spider web or if it is in the water for too long it will began to rot.
This experiment or demonstration is so easy to do. All you need is a handful of different kinds of seeds, a bowl of water, and a hairdryer. It is important to explain to children that the hairdryer should not come close to the water.
I love vintage books, papers, and pressed flowers. I made a booklet where I could keep seeds and pressed flowers in homemade vintage envelopes. This is my favorite corner in our house because it’s my creative corner and a the corner where I get to sit down and talk to so many lovely people around the world. To learn how to make the envelopes and to see my booklet, please watch the video below.
The seed unit cards are from Twig and Moth.
The flower press is from Bella Luna Toys.
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