This page last changed on Sep 22, 2007 by mbruozas.

Driving Question

What do plants eat?


Exploring the Question

Professor Green a well known professor of plants and his team of students, known as the "Green Team", have been examining plants and their behavior.  There is one question that they have been pondering - do plants actually eat?  Sally one member of the Green Team says, "Plants do eat."

Tommy another member of the team questions Sally, "How do you know that plants eat?"

Sally replies in a very confident manner, "Well, plants are living things, right?"

Tommy, "Right!"

Sally, "Both me and my dog are living things and we eat, right?"

Tommy, "OK"

Sally. "Then since a plant is also a living thing, then it should eat too."

Tommy replies with, "That is crazy, have you ever seen a plant actually eat?"

Sally, "No, but it is a living thing."

Tommy further elaborates, " I agree with you that plants are living things, but I don't think they actually eat like you and I and your dog might eat.  For one thing, they don't have a mouth and teeth."

Sally, "If you don't think that plants eat, then how do they survive?  Professor Green told us that plants are living things that thrive and survive."

Tommy replies with, "That I don't know but I bet if we take a closer look at a plant, we might be able to find some clues to help us answer this question."

What do you think about Tommy and Sally's discussion? Write down any information that you might have about plants that would help Sally and Tommy.

insert text box

Below are questions that you and the green team will be exploring further: 

  • Why do plants look the way they do?
  • Why do plants have stems, roots and leaves?
  • Can plants survive without sunlight and water?
  • Do plants eat?

[note to Carolyn and others -

I was trying to model this section off of the friction intros with sally and sticky world.   I don't know what the story is for the 3-4 grade plants.  I am tossing this idea about the professor and the his green team out as a suggestion for the basis of the story.   The general idea is to take these two view points that the two students have on the answer to the queestion - do plants eat?  and play them out in each of the activities (possibly the elborate part of the 5 Es.  This could address our/my concern that we are leaving the students with a misconception because of the way our driving question is framed.

The above could be elaborated on more and made more kid "spectaular".]

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