Plant Science Activities for Kids offer great STEM lessons for children across all age groups. Your child can learn a lot of Science and Math by simply observing plants.
All these Plant Science Activities are perfect for your budding gardener and can be done in the convenience of your backyard without much prep. Just the perfect way to keep children busy and teach hands-on STEM lessons.
Plant Science Experiments for Kids
1. Flavoured Salad leaves
The first of these Plant Science activities for kids will surely ignite your child’s inner scientist. Quiz him if he could add or change the taste of salad leaves. The catch is no dressing is allowed.
Our recent STEM unit on Parts of Plants had given us enough insights on how water and nutrients are transported (capillary action) to different parts of plants. Now, was the time to experiment with what we had learned and put our knowledge to test.
Take some salad leaves or lettuce. Don’t trim their shoots. Wash them well. Now take two cups of water. Dissolve salt in one cup and sugar in another cup.
Place the leaves in both the cups making sure their shoot/stem is under the water.Taste the leaves from the different cups after 5-6 hours. Do they taste different?
Science Activities for Preschoolers like this one boost critical thinking and logical reasoning, teaching kids cause and effect.
2. Leaf Chromatography
This is one of the most fun hands-on plant science experiments for kids. Ask them if they really think leaves are green or if leaves have different colours hiding inside them.
Try this simple science activity to find the answer. What you need is:
Step 1: Take a leaf and grind it to make paste.
Step 2: Make a 1:1 solution of water and alcohol in a cup. Mix the leaf paste in the solution.
Step 3: Cut a long strip of kitchen paper towel with scissors.
Step 4: Roll the paper towel around the middle of the pencil so that one end of kitchen paper towel hangs loose.
Step 5: Place the pencil across the cup so that the loose end dips into the solution. Make sure not to dip more than 3-4cms of the paper towel.
Now let the paper towel sit still. After a few hours you will notice different colour pigments on the paper towel strip. What colour pigments do you see?
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3. Uncover Succulent’s Secret
Are succulents in your garden hiding a secret? Try this fun Plant Science Activity for kids to find out. It is immensely simple and highly enlightening.
Take two sample leaves – one from a succulent and another from any shrub.
Try picking leaves of similar size. Place the leaves on a plate and cover it with a transparent lid.
Now, put this plate in a sunny spot. Observe the leaves for a few days.
Which leaf dried faster? Why? Is the succulent hiding a secret store of water inside it?
4. Peas in a Pod
This is a wonderful Plant Science Activity for kids for all age groups. Take some pea pods and ask your little scientist to explore nature’s wonderful packaging.
Ask your child to try tearing the pods. Is it easy? Why do you think peas are packed like this? Do all peas have same number of peas inside them?
5. Bring Dried Leaf to Life
One of the magical Plant Science experiments for kids, this is immensely fun! We bet your children will be amazed and ecstatic with science activity!
What you need is a few dried leaves and a bowl of water.
Ask your child to observe the dried leaf. Can they crumble it easily? Now, place the dried leaf in the bowl of water and let it sit for a few hours.
Now, try crumbling it again. What do you see? Is it as easy as before or did you just bring a dried leaf to life again?
6. Flower Measurement
Another activity that integrates plant science with mathematics. Ask your children to pick a few fallen flowers and pluck out their petals.
Trace the petal shapes and measure them using a ruler. It is surprising how many different shapes and petal lengths are there right in your garden.
For hands-on math games and activities, check out Easy Math Card Games for Kids to make learning math fun!
7. Leaf Area
This super STEM activity is for slightly older children, 6+years. Trace leaves on a grid paper and have your children count the squares within the boundary.
Considering each square as a unit, the number of squares would give you approximate area of the leaf.
Try with different leaves and compare the areas to see how some leave’s shapes look deceptive!
8. Pine Cone Activity
Try this simple Pine cone activity. All you need is a fallen pine cone and bowl of water.
Place the open pine cone in water and just wait to see the magic! It may take 5 to 10 minutes, but totally worth it!
9. Flower Pollination
We love this flower pollination activity. Understanding pollination and how bees & birds help in pollination is a bit tricky for children to understand.
Let’s try to make it a breeze for the kids.
All you need is a bag of Cheese Nachos or salted cheese popcorn. Other flavours work as well but this works the best!
Empty the nachos in a bowl and ask your little ones to touch a few using their hands. No licking fingers allowed!
Now, once they had a few bites, ask them to touch a tissue paper. What do you see? Is there magic pollen on the tissue paper too?
Just the way some of the seasonings stick to your hands when you eat with fingers, pollen sticks to bees and birds. And when they fly to other flowers, this pollen falls and gets transferred. Simple pollination!
That’s why we need bees to maintain our ecological balance! They are our natural pollinators.
Quick Tip: club this fun science activity with Pipe cleaner flowers crafts.
10. Plant Transpiration
Transpiration is a process through which plants get rid of excess water. But this water loss takes place invisibly!
Make this invisible process visible for the kids with this easy outdoor science experiment. This clever experiment will allow your kids (and you!) to see all the water that plants release back into the atmosphere.
All you need is a zip lock bag and a plant! Cover a branch of the chosen plant (preferably in a sunny spot) with the zip pouch and seal it.
Observe after few hours. Your kids will be amazed to see water droplets condensing along the sides of the zip pouch, fogging it completely!
Certainly one of the best plant science experiments for kids of all ages, this is a must try!
Quick Tip: Add a Scarecrow Craft to you plant study unit to make it more fun and creative.
Colour changing flowers science activity is super easy and another cool way to learn about capillary action and plant pigments. What we love about this activity is how neatly it fits with every age group!
12. Plant Vascular System Activity
The vascular system of plants consists of conducting tissues and supporting fibers, which transport nutrients and minerals to different Parts of the Plant.
With this cool science experiment, your kids (and you!) will be able to see the vascular system in all its beauty and that too with naked eye, without any microscope.
How to do it:
What you need is cabbage leaves. That’s all! We choose red cabbage owing to its season, availability and the lovely colour.
Take the outer leaf of the cabbage and boil it in water for roughly 5-6minutes till you see the colour draining out of it.
Take the leaf out and let it cool off. Once cooled, hold it in between your fingers towards light to see the amazing vascular system of plants.
This is such an amazing science activity to see a vascular system that is otherwise hidden from the naked eyes.
You can also draw similarities between the plant’s vascular system and animal circulatory system. The web of vessels is somewhat similar.
Over To You…
These practical, easy to do plant science experiments for kids are a great addition to primary school science lessons delighting kindergarten kids to older students.
What’s more these science activities for kids are easy on the pocket and also make up for wonderful science projects for school.