Our Project for the Spring Term is ‘A World of Plants and trees – Habitats!’
Last term’s project about plants and trees was such a big hit with our children that we’ve decided to extend this further by looking at the different types of plant habitats at home and around the world, and the multitude of different plants and trees that we find there.
We’ll be exploring what a habitat is and how it must provide all of the things that living plants need to grow.
Looking at micro-habitats found on nature walks encourages our children to use all of their senses as they discover the different types of plants that grow in the woods around the nursery and why they grow there.
Closer inspection of plants using magnifying glasses shows the children the finer details of the leaves and stems and the more intricate structures of the plants that we find in our local woodland environment.
Children are naturally curious about other countries and this project gives us great opportunities to talk about how the different weather that we find around the world affects the types of plants that can grow there.
“What are the different types of habitat that we find in other countries as well as our own?”
There is such a wide variety of habitat, even in our own country, that this project provides a whole wealth of ideas for learning and fun. We will be asking our children which particular environments they would like to learn about the most, and this can include:
- Coniferous forest. Coniferous forests are often found in cool areas in the Northern Hemisphere, such as Canada, Alaska, Scandinavia, and parts of Russia, as well as in the UK
- Savannah. These tropical grasslands are found in Africa
- Tropical rain forests. Steamy wet forests found in South American countries, Asia and Australia
- Hot desert. Found in Africa, the Middle East and Asia
- Tundra. Found in the Polar regions
- Deciduous forest. Found in the USA, Russia, Japan and China
- Wetlands and swamps. Found in the USA and South America
Small world play enables our children to explore other environments and create stories that can be shared with their friends. Providing children with the space and tools to express themselves enhances creativity and exploration.
As always, we will use a wide variety of stories, songs and role play to support the learning topics that will be included in our project this term. Teachers can also use the internet to help the children to see for themselves how varied the habitats of plants can be.
Picture matching on a world map helps our children to identify the different types of plants and where in the world we find them. Discussions about deciduous and coniferous trees that we touched on last term can now be extended to look at other types of plants such as cacti in arid lands and mosses, lichens and grasses in the tundra. We’ll be asking our children to think about what makes the types of plant different from each other and exploring the shapes of leaves, flowers and roots.
Questions such as…….
- What’s special about the plants in this habitat?
- Why differences can you see and why don’t they grow here?
….. give us great starting points for discussions and activity ideas. Measuring the sizes of trunks and leaves incorporates mathematical concepts including ‘bigger’ and ‘smaller’, ‘more’ or ‘less’ ‘longer or shorter’.
Pattern and colour recognition can also be included. Natural counting aids such as stems of plants, leaves and seeds etc bring diversity to encourage the development of the children’s budding number skills.
There will be many opportunities for our young artists to enjoy great arts and crafts activities that tie in nicely with this project.
If any of our families would like to get involved, they would be warmly welcomed by the children. Please encourage your child to observe the different types of plants they see on their travels, and discussions about what they look like and where they were found can be shared with their friends at Circle Time. If you have a particular interest in gardening and plants, we would love for you to come in to talk to the children or show us an activity idea that they could get involved with. Please speak to a teacher if this is something of interest to you.
The children have already told us how much they like learning about ‘The Wonderful World of Plants and Trees!’. We’re certain that this term’s project will continue to delight and inspire them.