- Students know how to carefully plant seeds in the Learning Garden
- Students will use a tool, Planting Strings, to plant seeds
- Students will understand the Learning Garden is full of seeds and they shouldn’t touch unless they have been instructed to.
Materials and Prep
- Seasonally appropriate seeds for planting
- Planting Strings, see Planting Strings Activity
- Review the activity and familiarize yourself with your Learning Garden
- Orient any volunteers to the activity and how your planting day will be structured
Use this activity in tandem with Big Green’s Soil Investigation Activity and Seeds by Feel Game to create a three station planting day with support from volunteers! To see an outline for the day, please review Big Green’s Planting with your Classroom.
Planting with students should be fun, hands on, engaging, and informative! This activity allows teachers and or volunteers to plant with a small group of students in the Learning Garden. Students can rotate between different activities so they can get one on one attention while they are planting seeds. If you have a volunteer helping you today, make sure the volunteer reviews this activity!
Welcome your students to the Learning Garden and line students up along one side of the Learning Garden. Stand on the opposite side so you can address the entire group.
Ask students if they know what they will be doing in the Learning Garden today. Let them know they will be planting seeds!
Encourage the students to look at the soil with their eyes, and instruct them not to touch the soil until they’ve been asked. Let them know that other students may have planted seeds under the soil and we don’t want to hurt those seeds.
Introduce the seed(s) that the students will be planting today. Relate the seeds to recipes that they might enjoy, this helps create excitement and anticipation for the upcoming harvest!
Dig a trench row for your seeds using your hand. The depth of the trench should be based on the how deep you should plant your seed (usually 2 to 3 times the size of your seed).
Have students use their Planting Strings to plant seeds according to their seed space requirements. One seed should be placed next to each bead. Instruct the students not to push their seed into the soil, simply lay the seed next to the bead.
Have students form a line so you can work with one student at a time. Hold the seeds in your hand and ask the students to take 1-2 seeds from your hand and place the seed next to the bead on your Planting String. The larger the seeds or the older the students the less assistance they will need in keeping track of what bead is next in line. Adjust your seed planting tactics accordingly. Alternatively, you may assign a student to help you and make sure they keep track of what bead comes next!
After a student has planted, instruct them to go to the back of the line. Continue planting until the entire row or bed is planted or your time is coming to an end.
Once all of the seeds have been laid out, remove the Planting String and cover the trench row with soil. Ask your students to lightly tap or pat the top of the soil to make sure your seeds are safely planted.
Have students share out key parts of today’s discussion and review the Activity Outcomes.
Students should clean-up the Learning Garden as needed.
Follow up this activity with Big Green’s watering activities!