Leaves – Background


Leaves are all around us. They are a welcome sign of spring, brightening the landscape with fresh green. They give us shade in summer and color fields and hillsides emerald. Every fall they dazzle us with their fiery display of color. Leaves come in a variety of shapes and sizes, yet a close-up look reveals patterns that help us identify them. Despite differences in form, all leaves perform the same vital function – capturing sunlight and turning it into food for the plant. Continue reading Leaves – Background

Leaves: Nature’s Suncatchers – Activities

FOCUS: Leaves come in a variety of shapes and sizes, but they are all designed to make food for the plant, using sunlight, water, air, and their green pigment, chlorophyll. With close observation, leaf features such as shape and venation can provide important clues to the identity of plants.

Objective: To begin to explore and ask questions about leaves.

Bring in or have children gather an assortment of leaves. Ask small groups of children to sort their leaves according to their observations.

Materials: an assortment of leaves.

Objective: To identify physical features of leaves and associated vocabulary.

Bring in an assortment of different types of leaves and give one to each child. Using the Leaf Anatomy and A Variety of Leaves diagrams, Continue reading Leaves: Nature’s Suncatchers – Activities

Leaves: Nature’s Suncatchers – Puppet Show

Leaf It to Leaves!

Characters: Woody Woodchuck, Freda Fern, Pine Needles, Gertie Grass, Chlorophyll, Maple Leaf

Props: carbon dioxide, water drop, sun, clover leaf, words to song.

Woody Woodchuck  (singing while holding clover) I’m looking over a four-leaf clover that I overlooked before. Mmm – I certainly do love leaves. They make such wonderful meals for a woodchuck. And they come in all shapes and sizes. (Freda Fern enters, clover exits) Why, hello there, Freda Fern. I was just thinking about you.

Freda Fern  You were? Why’s that? I’m all ears – well, actually I’m all leaves. Continue reading Leaves: Nature’s Suncatchers – Puppet Show

Leaves: Nature’s Suncatchers – Standards


The activities in this unit help children understand the basic concepts in the Disciplinary Core Ideas listed here. You can use the following list as a guide for lesson planning. These Disciplinary Core Ideas are taken from Grade Band Endpoints in A Framework for K-12 Science Education. Additionally, our activities give children opportunities to engage in many of the Science and Engineering Practices and reflect on the Crosscutting Concepts as identified in the Next Generation Science Standards. Continue reading Leaves: Nature’s Suncatchers – Standards