Step 2: Teach Lesson
Tell the student: Plants are composed of about 70% water, and water is essential to them in many ways. It is
necessary in the beginning stages of the plant's life to soften the seed coat. This allows the root and leaf within
to push open the seed. Water dissolves minerals in the soil. Plant roots pick up the water and dissolved minerals.
Water transports materials up the stem to the leaves. All stages of a plant's life require water.
Today we will observe the impact of water on seed germination by planting Lima beans at a far distance from the
a water source. We are going to make predictions about how the seeds will grow. Record their predictions, and
amend predictions as needed.
Things to discuss during the activity. "Do plants need water? Can plants have too much water? Do seeds need water?
Can seeds have too much water? What else seems to affect the growth of seeds? Of plants?"
Put the flower pot in the corner of the planter box. For the moment, the pot should be empty. Add soil to the planter box
until it is approximately 2 inches deep. Make sure the soil is packed tightly in the box.
In the planter box, mark off 4 diagonal rows with the string. The first row should be very close to the pot. Each diagonal
row after that is 3 inches apart from the other.
Have the student plant the first row of seeds very close to the pot. Plant the remaining seeds following the string
markings. The student should push the seeds into the soil with their fingers. Fill the flower pot half full of water. Do not put
any water in the soil. Add water to the flowerpot as necessary, keeping the soil close to the flower pot slightly moist.
Have the student predict what will happen. Write their predictions on a chart which can be accessed for later use.
(The seeds nearest the water will sprout first. Another row may germinate. The seeds farthest out usually do not sprout
due to the lack of water.)