Life Cycle of a Plant

In this lesson, we will:

  1. identify the phases of the life cycle of a plant
  2. act out the life cycle of a plant
  3. discuss how plants use sunlight, water, and soil to create food (photosynthesis)
  4. conduct an experiment that shows what happens then plants are denied each of the following: water, sunlight, soil


Activity 1:  What Do Plants Need to Grow?

Materials - 4 of the same plant, a sunny place, the observation sheet

Set Up Picture - Day 0 

Observation Day 1     Observation Day 2     Observation Day 3     Observation Day 4     Observation Day 5

Disclaimer:  On the observation sheet, it says I use pansies.  This year I used marigolds.  The cup beside plant 3 is now on top of the plant to block the sunlight.  We will remove it each day to record our observations then put it back onto the plant.

* I learned that marigolds are sturdier and more resilient than pansies.  You can see in this picture how susseptable the pansies were to not having their needs met.  When I do this in the future, I will stick to pansies. 


Activity 2: Life Cycle of a Plant Yoga 


Activity 3:  Draw and Label the Life Cycle of a Plant

My drawing of the Stages of a Plant

There are many variations to this activity.  For the little ones, I let them sequence pictures of seed, sprout, plant, flower.  As they get older, we include more details.  This would also make a good writing activity. (ex.  Explain what happens in each of the plant's stages.  What would happen if there was not enough water or there were no pollinators?)  My daughter decided to use play doh to model the life cycle stages.  


Activity 4:  Read Aloud  From Seed to Sunflower by:  Camilla de la Bedoyere



Activity 5: Photosynthesis Yoga


Extra Resources:

Real life pictures are are good source to use for sequencing, writing prompts, labeling, or just making observations.

Label, Draw, Write printable

Photosynthesis Poster

MS Science Standards:

  • L.K.2.1 Use informational text or other media to make observations about plants as they change during the life cycle (e.g., germination, growth, reproduction, and death) and use models (e.g., drawing, writing, dramatization, or technology) to communicate findings.
  • L.K.3A.1 With teacher guidance, conduct a structured investigation to determine what plants need to live and grow (water, light, and a place to grow). Measure growth by directly comparing plants with other objects.
  • L.1.2.1 Investigate, using observations and measurements (non-standard units), flowering plants (pumpkins, peas, marigolds, or sunflowers) as they change during the life cycle (i.e., germination, growth, reproduction, and seed dispersal). Use drawings, writing, or models to communicate findings.
  • L.1.3A.1 Conduct structured investigations to make and test predictions about what plants need to live, grow, and repair including water, nutrients, sunlight, and space. Develop explanations, compare results, and report findings.