Lesson Plan Industry Sector
Agriculture & Natural Resources

Lesson Plan Originally Created By: Austin Large

Plant Growth Requirements

Part of Unit: Plant Growth and Development

Lesson Plan Overview / Details

During this lesson students will be exposed the requirements of plants for growth. Students will have the opportunity to become familiar with each requirement for plant growth, and what effect that requirement has on the plant.

Lesson Time

1 Class Period
55 Minutes

Objectives and Goals

  • Describe the effect of light on plants
  • Describe a plant's temperature needs
  • Describe a plant's water needs
  • Explain how air affects plants

Activities in this Lesson

  • As students enter the room, welcome them and let them know that you are excited to continue the work that you are doing in your horticulture unit! Before you move on however, you are going to share with them a story, and this story will require them all to participate, but reassure them that no one is going to have to get out of their seats to do so. This story requires you to teach the students certain motions, and also for you to fold simple origami objects (hat, fireman's cap, cup, boat, see attached photos). Begin to tell the story to the students:

    "Once upon a time, there was a young boy named Austin, and Austin loved nothing more that to play outside! He would run home from school everyday, change into grungy clothes and be outside until his mom called him back in a night! This day was no exception, and Austin was outside playing in the sun light (pause the story and have all of the students do the motion for sunlight - "Jazz Hands"). However, on this day, the sunlight was covered up by clouds, and it began to get very cold. Austin knew the perfect remedy however, and made himself a hat out of paper that was folded in his pocket.

    Suddenly, Austin looked up into the sky and noticed that they was smoke billowing into the sky just a short distance away. He hopped on his bike, and started pedaling in that direction. When he showed up to the scene a huge apartment building was on fire! He took his trusty paper hat, folded it once into a fireman's cap, and raced into the building - saving screaming ladies and crying babies! When they got the fire out, Austin walked outside and was sweating, so he needed to fan himself (teach students the temperature movement - fanning your face) to cool down!

    That wasn't working so Austin decided he needed a drink of water to perk him back up! He took that fireman's cap and folded it into a cup, and got some water out of the hydrant (teach students the water movement - gulping water) and took a huge gulp! Feeling refreshed he wanted to relax! He hopped on his bike over to the boat dock, folded the cup into a boat, and set sail! He was relaxing when the wind started to blow (teach students the air movement - blowing air), and the boat was tossed this way, and that way, and this piece tore off, that piece tore off, and another piece tore off. But he was okay because he had his lifevest the whole time!"

    Review with the students again the important components of motions of the story (Light, Temperature, Water and Air) and let them know that just as those factors affected the story that they just heard, they also affect plants and the way that they grow!

    Resources and Materials

  • After you have identified the four requirements for plant growth, you will need to inform students that they will need to utilize their listening skills, artistic skills, and the motions that they just learned to be successful during this activity. While you are explaining these simple expectations to students, hand out the "Plant Requirements 4-Square" and cue up the powerpoint presentation.

    Let students know that the first requirement that you are going to cover is Light - and have all students do the light motion that you learned during the story. Utilize the powerpoint and have students capture down important information in the square with the number 1 in the corner. Once students have written down the information, have them draw an icon underneath the line in the bottom of the box, that will help them to remember this requirement. When the students have an icon, have them share it with a person sitting near them.

    The next requirement is temperature - and have all of the students make the temperature motion that was learned during the story. Once students have the information copied down, hand each table/group/student (however your class is broken up) a plant hardiness zone map. Have the students identify the following:

    1) In which zone does your home fall?

    2) What do we think might happen if we attempt to grow a plant from another zone in ours?

    Explain to the students that the map gives us valuable information about how to provide the proper climate for particular plants. Once again have students draw an icon for this requirement and share it with a new partner.

    Check for understanding and review the first two requirements by asking for their motions - then move onto the third which is water, and have the students do the motion that they learned during the story. Have students capture the information in the third square on the handout. After they are done, have them draw an icon for that requirement and share with a partner.

    Check again for understanding, and have them recite the three requirements that you have covered by having them redo the motions. Introduce the fourth and final requirement which is air - have students do the motion for air that they learned during the story. Have them capture all of the information about air, and then draw an icon and share it with a neighbor.

    Resources and Materials

  • Let students know that they have done an excellent job, but now it time for the true test! Have the students pair up with another student and ask them "can you remember all of the requirements for plant growth?" and their partner must respond with the four requirements and their motions, and then the students switch roles!

  • After students completed their review of the requirements with their partner, refocus their attention, and explain the following scenario to them:

    "You and your partner will take on the roles of a reporter and an expert on the topic of plant growth requirements"

    After setting that context, deliver the following directions:

    1) When I say "go" one of you will take on the role of the reporter, and the other will take on the role of the expert

    2) Reporters, with that pen microphone in hand you are going to have a minute and a half to ask the expert questions from your note sheet.

    3) At the end of those 90 seconds, you will switch roles, and the expert will now become the reporter and vice-versa. Another 90 seconds will be given to the new reporter.

    4) When you have finished, set down your trusty pen-microphone and focus your attention back up front.

    Allow students to ask questions of clarification, and then being the activity. While the students are interviewing, monitor time and be sure to tell them when to switch. Also, during their interview time pass out to them an index card that they will use as a slip out the door.

  • After students have shared their "expertise" on plant growth requirements in their groups, provide them with praise for their efforts and hard work! Let them know that they have one last thing to complete before they can be certified as experts on plant growth requirements, and that is to answer the questions that are on the last slide of the PowerPoint on the index card handed out during the eye-witness activity. Let them know that once they are finished, they can put their personal items away, but remain seated and make sure that their cards are in hand!

  • Well folks, today has been another great day learning about horticulture! We came in to class today not knowing the first thing about what plants need in order to grow - and we are leaving as experts in this area! For good measure, remind me again what the four requirements are? (Have students do the four motions and recite the names of the requirements)! Excellent! I am looking forward to diving in further to horticulture with all of you tomorrow! Look around the classroom and give everyone and air-five for a job exceptionally well done!


Assessment Types:
Writing Samples, Exit Slip

Students assessment for this lesson will be to answer four teacher developed questions at the end of the PowerPoint Presentation.  After they have answered the questions they will turn in their answers (which are recorded on index cards) to the teacher as they walk out the door for the day.


  • Plant Requirements Materials Plant Requirements Materials [ Download ]