Learning Where Vegetables Grow
We recently used a burlap gardening board I created to explore just where the vegetables we eat grow on a plant. The vegetables we sorted were made of felt and displayed on card stock cards. I thought you might not have the time to make them from scratch. Instead, I have made you a set of printable photos of the felt vegetables you can use. They are displayed in the pictures below.
Under the Ground Vegetables
After sorting through the pile of plants, the plants that grow vegetables under the ground were placed on the gardening board. The leafy green section of the plant was placed in the green area of the board. The section of the card displaying the underground vegetable was placed in the brown area.
Once you have the vegetables in place, you might want to take a moment to talk about the words under and over. You can have your children point to the parts of the plant that are under the ground and over the ground. It will give your children a quick lesson on positional words.
On the Ground Vegetables
There are three vegetables that grow on the ground or the green area of the gardening board. They don’t grow on a plant hanging down to the ground. The base of the plant is cut off where it sits on the ground. Those vegetables are the stem or flower of the plant. The broccoli is a flower. The asparagus is a stem. The celery maybe called a stem for this activity lesson, but it is petiole. A petiole is a small stalk attaching the leaf blade of a plant to the stem.
Above the Ground Vegetables
The last area to place vegetables in is the blue area. While they don’t grow while floating in the air, they don’t grow on the ground either. If you feel there needs to be a plant displayed on your gardening board, you can cut one out of felt.(We just displayed them above the ground.) Each of the above ground vegetables has its own unique plant. I decided to avoid having the vegetables grow from the wrong type of plant by not including one.
You may look at the above ground vegetables and wonder if they are all really vegetables. Well, technically some of them are fruits. The peas are really seeds. The tomatoes are fruits. Beans are a fruit. Corn is considered by some to be a fruit and others to be a vegetable. For this activity the food that grows above ground was called a vegetable, but it would be fine for you to share what they are instead.
When you have all the vegetables displayed on the gardening board, you can quickly review the positional words over, on, and below.
How I Made the Gardening Board
The gardening board is made of three colors of burlap glued to a large piece of cardboard. The blue and brown areas were made larger than the green area. The above the ground and underground areas are bigger than the ground in real life so I made them that way on the board.
You actually don't need to make a gardening board with burlap the way I did. Painting the three sections onto cardboard or gluing blue, green and brown construction paper on a piece of cardboard would be fine too.
Deirdre is the author of JDaniel4’s Mom where she shares other learning activities, printables, crafts, and food creations. She loves growing and learning beside her son. You can find her on Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram.