Thursday, April 9, 2015

Parts of a Flower: Pollination


Jelly Bean and Jumping Bean learned about the parts of a flower- petals, stem, leaves, and roots while learning about seeds last spring, and now that spring is in full bloom, they have more questions about nature.  For example, why is there so much green stuff on our cars right now, and what is it?  This was the perfect opportunity for us to explore the inside parts of a flower and introduce them to pollination.


After looking at our pollen covered car, we went on a flower hunt.  We grabbed bags and scissors to collect flowers in our neighborhood.


Next, we went home and dumped our treasure of flowers on the table to see what different varieties we found.


The tulip we collected was a great example showing the different parts inside the flower- anther, filament, stigma, style, and ovary.


Jelly Bean and Jumping Bean then investigated the rest of the flowers by pulling off the petals, comparing the different colors and shapes of the petals, and using a magnifying glass to get a closer look. 


After taking everything apart and investigating the flowers, we had another great example of the male and female parts of the flower that play a part in pollination.



My explanation of pollination to Jelly Bean and Jumping Bean was pretty minimal.  I explained that there are male and female parts- I called them the daddy and mommy parts.  I showed them the petal was still holding the anther and the filament.  The anther has all the pollen on it.  Next, I showed them that the long stem has the female parts on it- the stigma, style and ovary.  During pollination, the pollen comes off the anther and flies around getting on our cars turning everything green.  It will also get onto the stigma and go down the style into the ovaries.  This is where new seeds are made for fruits, vegetables, and other plants. 


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Supplies:
  • scissors
  • bag
  • magnifying glass
  • variety of flowers
Instructions:
  1. Go on a flower hunt to collect a variety of flowers.  Cut the flower off the bush or from the garden and place it in a bag
  2. Place all the flowers on a table and look at the different types of flowers- discuss similarities and differences between the flowers. 
  3. Find a flower that shows the male and female parts.  Discuss the different parts.
  4. Pull apart the flowers and use a magnifying glass to get a closer look.
  5. Discuss how the male and female parts work together during pollination.
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