This week we are going to learn about corn and hopefully you will be able to observe an ear of corn up close. In addition to learning about corn, do your best to spend some time outdoors enjoying the summer weather. If it is too hot in the afternoons, try going outside in the early morning right after breakfast or in the evening and see if that makes it more enjoyable for your family.
Inside Preparation Work
1. Read in the Handbook of Nature Study pages 598-604. Highlight any facts about corn that can be shared with your children during the follow-up activity.
“Corn should be germinated between wet blotters in a seed testing experiment before observations are made on the growing corn of the fields.”
Handbook of Nature Study, page 601
Follow the same procedure that you did with the bean germination to germinate a few kernels of corn. The Germinator
(This project was a part of Outdoor Hour Challenge #19 and the Bean Challenge.)
3. For this challenge, spend 10-15 minutes outdoors. Afterwards, you might include a trip to the grocery store to pick out some ears of corn to observe and then to eat at a meal. Check on any seeds or plants that you have in your garden for the challenges. Keep your eyes out for some clover if you have not had the chance to study some up close yet.
4. Allow time for discussion and a nature journal entry after your outdoor time. Follow up any interest in any subjects you observed during your outdoor time. You can use the questions in the Handbook of Nature Study on page 603 to help you observe an actual ear of corn.
5. Prepare corn for eating and enjoy! You may want to pop some corn and have a popcorn feast as well. You may wish to view this YouTube video about popcorn: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q2lKV02JzPc
We are thinking about growing some popcorn next year. Here is a link with some information:
New for this series of challenges are custom made notebook pages for each crop plant we will study. I have designed simple to use pages that will complement each challenge and will be an easy way to start a nature journal. Each of the eight notebook pages is in full color, but they are just as great in black and white.