I while back I had a couple of bouquets of flowers that I knew would be slowly dying over the next couple days so before they started wilting I wanted to take advantage and have the kids dissect them. If this was planned out in advance instead of last minute I would’ve taken Ada and Zoey to the library the day before to get flower-related books and look up videos on YouTube, but instead we just explored… this time (as I can definitely see returning to this again).
I started by pulling out a kid’s microscope we had along with it’s plastic container to go under the lens. I also pulled out a cutting board, a dinner knife, and scissors for both Ada and Zoey so they could freely take apart the flowers. With older kids I could definitely see using a sharper knife to if you want smoother slices in the flower petals or you could help cut the pieces for them. I figured this time was purely exploration and sensory play and let them go ahead on their own. I went through the bouquet keeping my favorites for display (keeping in mind I wanted to try to dye some of the flowers later on) and divided the rest of the flowers between the girls. The kids had a blast talking about their favorite flowers, favorite colors, and sharing what they saw. When the odd question popped up I tried to answer it and if I didn’t know I looked online for the answer. This is a great quick activity or perfect as part of a larger flower learning adventure.
I wanted to share this to encourage looking at things (flowers for example) that we know we’re going to get rid of and find ways to enjoy them more first. If I didn’t set up this science sensory bin the flowers would’ve lasted longer but they would have eventually died and been thrown out (we don’t have a composter). This way my kids were able to have some fun with them and look at what a flower consisted of. Either way the flowers are going to end up tossed but this way we had more fun with them first.
Next time we do this I’m going to look up flower videos first and head to the library to find books we can look through before and after. Doing a quick search I found a definition of a ‘flower’ through the Encyclopædia Britannica and “Parts of a Flower and Plant – Do You Know Them All? (7 Diagrams: Flower, Cell, Leaf, Stem etc.)” on Home Stratosphere if you want great diagrams to go over with your kids. For videos I found two quick videos on YouTube that you may want to look over first: “Parts of a flower and Pollination | The Dr. Binocs Show | Learn Videos For Kids” through Peekaboo Kidz and “Flower Reproduction” by Mark Drollinger with accompanying worksheet.
I’d love to hear from you whether you did this yourself, have some resources you’d love to share, or have any questions. Feel free to leave them in the comments below, on my Facebook page, or through Instagram. Hope you have a great day!