Outdoor STEAM Expeditions with Leaf Sorting
Outdoor STEAM: Young children love exploring nature. Take your child outside to discover leaves. While you’re out, look for leaves of all shapes and sizes. During your adventure, talk to your child about how leaves help plants grow. You can touch different leaves and notice how they feel. Some may be smooth, while others might be rough. Encourage your child to collect leaves they find interesting. You can even draw or write about each leaf in a notebook. When you get home, you can do fun activities with the leaves. Try making leaf rubbings or pressing leaves between wax paper to save them. By exploring leaves together, you’re helping your child learn about nature and the world around them. So, get ready for a leaf-tastic adventure!
Here’s How to Teach About Leaves
- Head outside with your child and ask, “Do you know what the job of a leaf is? Engage your child in a conversation about different parts of the tree (roots, trunks, branches, leaves) and record your child’s initial ideas.
- Engage your child in a conversation about the initial observations while collecting leaves from different kinds of trees with different shapes and colors.
- Bring the collection inside and make comparisons and observations. You can sort leaves by size, color, and texture.
- Add some math activities by measuring leaves using unifix cubes or a ruler.
- At the end of the activity, you will discover that plants need three things to make their own food. They need Water, Carbon Dioxide, and Light for a process called photosynthesis.
Tell your child that regardless of their shape or size, all leaves have the same job – to help make food for the plant.
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By Marnie Forestieri
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