Planting Grass Seeds

Plant grass seeds in soil and plastic baggies. Check seeds three days later and the following week to see how much they’ve grown.

Materials

  • cat grass seeds
  • plastic cups (with holes punched in the bottom for drainage)
  • potting soil
  • water spray bottles
  • tape
  • plastic wrap
  • paper towels
  • plastic sandwich bags
  • camera
  • a chart labeled “Watch Them Grow”

Key Science Concepts

  • Plants grow from seeds.
  • There are many different types of plants and seeds.
  • Different plants grow from different seeds and bulbs.

Vocabulary

Encourage children to use words like grass, seeds, grow, and sprout. Emphasize science process words like observe, describe, and predict.

Directions

Tell children they will be planting grass seeds in soil and in plastic sandwich bags without soil.

Planting in Soil

  1. Have each child fill a plastic cup most of the way with potting soil and plant about a dozen seeds. Gently cover the seeds with soil.  
  2. Have children moisten the soil, using the water spray bottle.  
  3. Help children write their names on tape and label their cups. Put plastic wrap over the cups. (The plastic wrap will help the soil stay moist. Remove the plastic when seedlings appear.) Ask, Do you think we will be able to see when the seeds first start growing? Why or why not?

Planting in Plastic Bags

Tell children that they will also plant some seeds in plastic bags.  

  1. Have children fold a paper towel to fit in a plastic sandwich bag. Then have them wet the paper towel and place it in the bag. Place seeds on the towel (about a dozen) and then close the bag.
  2. Help children label their bags and attach them to a bulletin board or window.

Document Plant Growth

Take photos of one of the cups and one of the bags of the grass seeds. Add these photos to a “Watch Them Grow” chart and label the photos “Day 1.”

Reflect and Share

Talk to children about what they think will happen to these seeds. Ask, Do you think the seeds will sprout in both the cups and the bags? Why or why not? Do you think we’ll see the first sprouts growing on the paper towels or in the cups? Why do you think so?

Encourage children to think about grass and ask, What are some places where we see grass? What do we do in places where there is grass? What do you like about it?  Have children draw what they predict the grass will look like one week later. Help them to label these drawings as predictions.

Three Days Later: What Happened? <A head>

Check on the grass you planted. What do you notice?

Materials

  • grass planted in soil and plastic bags
  • magnifying glasses
  • “Watch Them Grow” chart

Key Science Concepts

  • There are many different types of plants and seeds.
  • Plants grow from seeds.  

Vocabulary

Emphasize plant words like seed, roots, sprout, stalk, and leaves, as well as science process words like experiment, test, compare, describe, observe, and prediction.

Directions

Tell children that they will be checking on the grass seeds that they planted earlier.

  1. Examine the grass seeds in the plastic bags. Ask them what they notice. Have them use the magnifying glasses to get a closer look.
  2. Now look at the beans in the soil, and ask them what they observe. If they don’t see anything, ask them what they think is happening under the soil.
  3. Have children take photos of the grass to add to the “Watch Them Grow” chart and label the photos “Day 3.”

Reflect and Share

Ask children to describe what they observe:

  • How have the seeds changed since the last time you looked?
  • Did all of the seeds grow the same amount?  
  • Why do you think it is easier to see plants growing in the plastic bags than in the soil? What do you think might be happening under the soil?
  • What part of the plant seems to be growing first? Why do you think so?

One Week Later: What Happened? <A head>

Observe and compare your growing plants.

Materials

  • grass seeds planted last week
  • “Watch Them Grow” chart

Key Science Concepts

  • Plants grow from seeds.
  • Different plants grow from different seeds and bulbs.
  • Plants have different parts: roots, stems, leaves, and fruit. 

Vocabulary

Encourage children to use vocabulary related to plants, such as leaves, stems, roots, and seeds, and science process words such as observe, describe, compare, and predict.

Directions

Tell children they are going to take a closer look at what they’ve grown.

  1. Compare the grass plants growing in the cups and the sandwich bags. Ask:
    • What looks different and what looks the same?
    • Have children look at the roots of the grass with their magnifying glasses.
    • Propose the idea of giving the grass a “haircut.” Ask, Do you think the cut grass will grow again? Why or why not?
  1. Continue to have children take photos for the “Watch Them Grow” chart, labeling the photos “Day 7.” Have them look at the chart and describe how the grass seeds changed over the last week.
  2. You and your children may want to continue documenting the growth of the plants over the next several weeks.  

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