Scientists in Siberia are seeing trends of more severe and widespread wildfires. Larch seeds are dispersed by wind. Experimentation is currently underway to determine distances larch seeds can disperse from viable, mature larch trees. Students will explore how various types of seeds are dispersed to get what they need to survive.
Timeframe: 90 minutes
Students will use one method of seed dispersal to move as many seeds as they can in 3 minutes.
- Download and watch YouTube videos listed in Resources
- Acquire and read the book “Seeds Move” by Robin Page
- Collect materials
- Prepare seed cards for sorting
- Preassessment: Give students a piece of paper. Have students draw and label a picture of how seeds travel to the places they grow. Challenge students to draw more than one mode of transportation
- Distribute seed cards to students
- Have students sort the seeds into groups that show how they move
- Ask students how they would move if they were a seed
- Roleplay moving like a seed (i.e. floating in the water, floating on the breeze, attaching to animal fur, etc.)
- Divide students into groups based on how they would move
- Provide students with materials to move lima beans from one part of the room to the other
- Challenge the students to be creative in moving their seeds across the room as far as they can. For example, the floating group may use a styrofoam cup to float lima beans, the animal group may use the tape to attach seeds to gloves or Velcro to hold seeds onto the gloves,
the wind team may attach their seed to a balloon and propel it by a fan.
- Set a timer
- After a given amount of time students will demonstrate their modes of transportation to the class
- The teacher and students will determine which seeds moved the farthest.
- Have a discussion about seed dispersal. and conduct a final assessment.
Students can demonstrate their learning through illustration, essay, song, or dance.
Go into the field and collect seeds. Divide them into varied groups of dispersal.
Older students can use their library and internet resources to expand their knowledge of seed dispersal.
- Seed Song - How Seeds Move - Seed Dispersal:
- Seed dispersal -- The Great Escape: https://youtu.be/xY4JFOSuqvY
- Image of various seeds for sorting
Students will draw and label 3 or more ways seeds can move. Students will explain why it is important that seeds move to new places.
Amanda Ruland, PolarTREC 2019
Saratoga Elementary/Middle School
agr5032 [at] gmail.com
K-ESS3-1. Use a model to represent the relationship between the needs of different plants and animals (including humans) and the places they live. [Clarification Statement: Examples of relationships could include that deer eat buds and leaves, therefore, they usually live in forested areas; and, grasses need sunlight so they often grow in meadows. Plants, animals, and their surroundings make up a system.]
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