Preschoolers are delighted by flowers that emerge during the spring. To encourage flower discoveries this spring, try the parts of a flower and playful learning flower suggestions for your own preschool discovery areas at home or in the classroom.
Playing with flowers is one of the best ways to encourage learning with preschoolers. The suggestions offered below will help you encourage playful discoveries whether at home or in the classroom.
- Real of Artificial Flowers
- Large Trays
- Magnifying Glasses
Discovery Area #1 – Exploring the Basic Parts of a Flower
Set out flowers on a table or on individual trays or mats. Invite your preschoolers to carefully observe the flowers with their magnifying glasses. What do they see? As the children observe their flowers, discuss the basic parts of a flower they see.
Roots: Roots are the part of the flowering plant underground. The roots support the flower and take in water and nutrients from the soil.
Stem: Supports the leaves and the flower – transports water and nutrients to the parts of the flower.
Flower: Attracts pollinators (like bees) to fertilize the flowers and to produce seeds.
Leaves: Make food for the plant (a process called photosynthesis).
Some children may already be familiar with the words: leaves, flower, stem, and roots. Ask the children why we don’t see roots on flowers we buy at the store and discuss the answers the children offer. Ask the children to locate the parts of the flower on their own flower.
- Free Printable Parts of a Flower and Labels – Parts of a Flower and Parts of a Flower Labels for Preschool
- Glue Sticks
Print the Parts of a Flower Mat for each of the children. Discuss the basic flower parts and see if the children can locate them on the mat. Kids can either write the parts of a flower words with markers or crayons, stamp the words with letter stamps, or cut out the printable labels to glue onto the flower mat. Preschoolers might also enjoy creating the parts of a flower with play dough.
Discovery Area #2 – Patterning with Flowers and Leaves in Preschool
- Leaves and Petals from Flowers
- Large Trays or a Table
Invite your preschoolers to gently cut the leaves away from the stem of the flowers. Place all the leaves in one pile. Preschoolers can then use tweezers to gently pluck the petals and sort into a separate pile. Encourage early math skills by inviting the kids to create patterns with the leaves and petals. Start with a basic AB pattern (pictured above) and progress to more difficult patterns as kids gain confidence with patterning.
Discovery Area #3 – Subitizing Small Groups of Leaves and Flower Petals
Use the leaves and flower petals to create small numbers of groups. See if the children can instantly recall how many petals and/or leaves are in each group. Subitizing is an important skill for intuitive math in preschool. Invite your preschoolers to work with peers creating small groups of petals and leaves for visual discovery.
Invite preschoolers to compare the parts of two or more flowers. All flowers have the same basic parts, but not always do they LOOK the same. Ask your preschoolers to share differences they find between types of flowers in your discovery area.
Discovering the parts of a flower is exciting for kids. Learning through tactile play will help all kids retain information while having FUN learning.
Suggested supplies for your flower discovery area are below: