Monday, April 7, 2014

What is a flower?

Spring has sprung and we have been focusing on provocations in the backyard which involve flowers and that provoke further investigation into what exactly makes a flower.

We are very lucky to have a large variety of flowers blooming in our yard and I have also brought in some from my house to showcase the variety  of flowers which occur.

 I like to begin with the largest flowers so magnolias and
camellias cover the tables.  Dandelions are collected and added.  The children enjoy harvesting these the self since the rain and sunshine have encouraged vigorous growth. There are spoons and jars and bowls for collecting and manipulating.  

The first thing that happened was that all petals were pulled off, revealing the center. Everyone marveled at the curly and straight lines and the variation if colors and shapes that make up the pistil and stamens. Once the flowers were disassembled, then the large petals were torn into smaller pieces. This is a very satisfying activity. 
C had an idea about adding rainwater and then stirring the mixture.  She used a paintbrush to do the mixing so soon ther petal water was tested out to see how it would work as paint. 

Offering these provocations of the parts of our outdoor environment encourage further study as well as applying there findings on other similar things through the yard. It is also the first step in our life cycle conversation which shows the children just how interconnected we are to each other, the parts in our yard and how things work. 

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