Download the visual resource that accompanies the session below.
Show learners the WWT ‘Plants’ visual. Explain that these are two types of plant but that there are many, many different plants in the playground, in the garden, in the park, in forests and in the world. Remind learners of the wetland plants they may have seen during their recent visit to WWT. In order to begin learning how to describe plants accurately use the following criteria to describe the dandelion on the WWT ‘Plants’ visual:
Size: small, big, tall, short, bigger than, smaller than, biggest, smallest, tallest.
Colour: green, brown, yellow, pink, orange, dark, light
Shape: thin, long, wide, round, small, spiky, smooth, wiggly, straight
Ask learners to work with a partner or a small group to describe the water lily using these three criteria (size, colour and shape).
Prior to the session collect eight leaves, flowers/petals, seeds etc from trees and plants in the playground (1 of each) e.g. leaves from four different plants, a seed, a blade of grass, a petal and a daisy. Only pick from common, abundant plants. Outside, with your class in a circle, display them on the ground on a large piece of white paper so that the shape, colour and size are easy to see. Ask learners to spend one or two minutes carefully studying the plant parts in front of them. Then ask the learners to work in pairs/small groups to gather the identical plant parts. Each group’s aim is to match their own collection to the original display. Now discuss the names of the plants these parts have come from.
Just do section A
Have a whole afternoon?
Extend section b) by covering the collection of plant parts and secretly taking one away. Now uncover them.
Can the class spot which one is missing? If they don’t know the name yet can they describe it? e.g. the one missing is the small, dark green, spiky leaf.
Give learners a piece of paper, preferably on a clipboard. Tell them to choose a plant and look at it carefully.
What size, colour and shape is it? Now ask them to draw it. Leave a central bank of coloured pencils somewhere accessible to the learners and encourage them to use them to give more detail to their drawings (this will really help them later when they have to describe the plant or their friend is identifying the plant). Once complete, gather the class and ask learners to use their drawing to help them describe the plant they were studying.
Can the rest of the class identify which plant in the playground they have drawn? (They can do this by simply pointing or chosen individuals walking over to the guessed plant).
To use the drawings as an ongoing resource, ask learners to put their name on the back. A pile of the drawings can be left in the classroom for others to choose from and go on a hunt to try and identify the plant in their friend’s drawing. If they are finding it tricky, they can always ask the illustrator.