July 12, 2017
It’s not too late to start a summer garden. Young minds are fascinated with seeds and plants. July is the perfect time to plant cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, garlic, collard greens, lettuce, watercress, herbs, and more.
Help children understand how seeds grow with an activity called Garden in a Glove. They will see the process of germination in clear plastic gloves as the seeds sprout.
• Latex-free plastic glove
• Permanent marker
• Five types of seeds
• Cotton balls
• Pipe cleaner or twist tie
1. Use a marker to label the seed type for each one of the glove’s fingers.
2. Wet the cotton balls with water and squeeze out excess water. The cotton balls should be slightly damp.
3. Put two or three seeds of the same type into each glove finger. Make sure the type of seed matches the label written on the finger.
4. Place one cotton ball inside each glove finger. A pencil may be needed to push the cotton ball into the tip of the glove’s finger.
5. Blow air into the plastic glove and close it with a pipe cleaner or twist tie.
6. Tape or hang the glove in a sunny, warm window.
7. Check your glove each day.
If you don’t have plastic gloves, you can also use small cups or egg shells. It will take 7-10 days for germination. This activity can continue if you choose to plant the germinated seeds. Plants can be transferred to soil, pots or an inexpensive plastic hanging shoe rack, for a vertical garden. Not only will children learn what is needed for plants to grow, they will also experience the responsibility it takes to care for their plants.
Activities on plant growth teach science, math (charting plant growth) and literacy (reading books about plant growth and drawing or writing in a journal). Additionally, as part of a lesson on nutrition, the plants can be used in a cooking activity or as a snack.
For more materials related to this activity, check out the books below about germination!
• “Oh Say Can You Seed?: All About Flowering Plants (Cat in the Hat’s Learning Library) by Bonnie Worth
• “The Tiny Seed” by Eric Carle
• “From Seed to Plant” by Gail Gibbons
• “A Seed in Need: A First Look at the Plant Cycle” by Sam Goodwin