Gunnera Tinctora leaf



Roots and leaves are the parts of the plant that are most important to feeding the plant. Review the song about the 6 plant parts. Where do plants get food to grow? You don’t see them in the grocery store! The leaves are like little food factories that synthesize the light of the sun into the sugar glucose. It is a process called photosynthesis. The leaf also transpires water through its leaves and breathes air through little structures on the underside of the leaf called stoma. They look like 2 lips and they open and close. Show pictures of stoma. Plants take in the carbon dioxide and put oxygen back in the air through their leaves.

The roots of a plant are important to anchor the plant and drink in water and nutrients from the soil. There are 4 basic root types: branching, tap roots, bulbs and tuber. Show kids samples of each type root and see if they can name which one it is when you hold it up.Pass out different kinds of leaves to each table for kids to examine and have them do some leaf rubbings. Point out the veins that run through the leaves that carry water and nutrients from the soil.

MATERIALS: Hand drum, chart of photosynthesis, samples of leaves, samples of root systems, picture of stoma in leaves, paper and crayons for rubbings

Activities: Sing plant songs and add ” My Roots Go Down”, leaf rubbings, grow sweet potatoe from a tuber. Let them go out with you to dig a few plants to examine their roots . . . maybe wild onion bulb, or grass, dandelion or a baby oak’s tap root. Note the arrangement of the leaves. Pick different leaves in the garden and have kids go on a leaf hunt to discover the plant in the garden that has their leaf. Grow a little duckweed in a glass of water and let them see the roots and watch them grow. Bring some root for a snack . . . maybe carrots! or radish or a little onion. Put a white carnation or queen Anne’s lace in a glass of water with a few drops of food coloring and let them observe the roots drinking up the color.
Some leaves may exibit guttation – when the leaves exude droplets of sap.


Leaf Veins

                          Lacinato kale