This page last changed on Oct 30, 2007 by mbruozas.

 New version of the activity as if 10-24-07

Identifying Picture for this activity - see 3-4 picture directions, confluence does not display pdfs or converted pdfs to jpgs.

    all written an in authoring tool/OTML see changes there.

   watch the video and construct a short story on what you saw.

Explore - time lapse video of radish seeds growing

Goal - students will identify the parts of a plant through observing radish seeds. 

   draw a typical plant

    watch the radish video and look at the roots.

    revisit your drawing and add anything about roots you observed.

    watch the radish video and look at the stems

    revisit your drawing and add anything about stems you observed 

    watch the radish video and look at the leaves

    revisit your drawing and add anything about leaves you observed   

Explain - plant parts model

Goal - Students will explain the function of the parts of a plant identified in the previous step through an interactive flash model.

Elaborate - cactus model

Goal - Students will experience another type of plant to further expand their understanding of the plant parts function. 

Evaluate - revisit the discovery question - why do plants look the way they do?

    Explain how a typical plant collects water, carbon dioxide and sunlight?


Old version of activity - activity changed 10-14-07 see above for new version. 

Engage/Elicit  - time lapse photography of plants growing

Discovery Question: Why do plants look the way they do?

 Click on the picture below.  Watch what happens in the movie.

students see time lapse photography of a radish seed turning into a plant ( Need to add a "pop up box" that describes what time lapse video is.

What is time lapse video?
 A video camera was filming the radish seeds day and night for 9 days.  That is 216 hours of radish seeds growing.  Radish seeds growing can take a long time, so the maker of this video made the video fast forward through all 216 hours of film.

Describe what you observed when you watched the movie.

Insert text box

Sometimes it is hard to catch all the details the first time you watch the movie. Watch the movie again, and look closely at the roots of the plant.


need to have circle around the roots and an arrow with the label of Roots.

Watch the movie again, and this time only look at the stems of the plant.


need to have an arrow pointing to the stem and label it stem

Watch the movie for one last time and look closely at the leaves on the plant.

need to have multiple arrows pointing to the leaves with the label of leaves

In this activity, your job is to figure out two things. 

  1. Figure out the structures found in all plants.  
  2. The function of each of those structures.

Don't forget to think how what you learn in this activity helps answer the bigger question - what do plants eat?

  Explore - the build your own plant flash animation

still waiting on the model for this section

In the time lapse video you saw a seed growing into a seedling.  You observed that seedlings growing roots, then stems and leaves.  All plants have some version of roots, stems and leaves.  They might not look the same but they perform the same job for the plant.  Use the model below to figure out the job of roots, stems and leaves. 

Pick a biome

Biome picture appears

Directions for creating a plant

Students 'make their plant'

Students 'test their plant' to see if it survived

Students learned why their plant survived or did not survive

[waiting on learning more about the mark up of flash model being created] 

  Explain - identify that plants have roots, stems and leaves and their function.

still waiting on the model to complete this section

Debrief experience from the model above. 

Stress the notion of survival.  And talk about which situations did not survive and which situations did survive.  Link survival to the idea of living.

Give students info and images on the functions that roots, stems and leaves in a plant. Possibly freeze frame and take pictures from the model.

Have the students answer questions about the function of roots, leaves and stems.  Don't give the answer -- they will get the answer in activity 2.

Talk about the differences in the different kinds of roots, leaves and stems.  Focus only on structure and have the students predict function.

question - why in the time lapse video did we see roots growing first from the seed? what is the advantage of having a longer root system?  what is the advantage of having a shorter root system?

(ex.  show the transport of water from roots to leaves via stem) Unpack the meaning of these pictures.

Answer the question - why do plants look the way they do?


waiting for the model to finish this section


Give the students certain situations to test out in the model and come back and answer more questions.

The above section is more them playing, this section gives students more direction so we can have a common experience to have a discussion around.

Extend- revisit the "Green Team" Question - Do plants eat? 

From this activity, Tommy and Sally found two clues to help them answer the question - do plants eat? 

Green Team Clue #1: All plants have roots, stems and leaves.

Green Team Clue #2: Plants only survive when they have enough food available. 

"Hey Tommy, in the model we saw that plants have food.  This must mean that plants eat." explains Sally.

"It explains that plants have food but it does not explain that they are eating the food.  I am still not convinced that plants actually eat food." said Tommy.

Do either of these clues help the Green Team answer the question - do plants eat?

insert text box

What type of evidence do we need to prove that plants eat? 

insert text box

Picture 1.pdf (application/pdf)
ipecacuanha.jpg (image/pjpeg)
3-4Act1Opening.pdf (application/pdf)
3-4Act1Opening.jpg (image/jpeg)
3-4Act1Opening.jpg (image/jpeg)

We have permission to use the time lapse video of the radish sprouting.  The YouTube vide creator, Dale Coleman, sent us a link to a higher quality QuickTime version.  See my notes:


Posted by cmcintyre at Sep 07, 2007 10:47
Document generated by Confluence on Jan 27, 2014 16:49