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Growing Minds is a program of Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project. ASAP’s mission is to help local farms thrive, link farmers to markets and supporters, and build healthy communities through connections to local food.

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Experimental Planting – 5th grade

Brief Description:

Students plant beans and set up an experiment to examine how light or water impacts plant growth.


  • Students plant a control and experimental plant from seed
  • Students design a light or water experiment for their plants
  • Students make predictions about how their experiment will impact the growth of their plant


Seeds, soil, cup, newspaper, water, science notebooks

Standard Course of Study Goals:

Science –1.04, 1.06

English Language Arts – 2.09

Getting Started / Procedure

  1. Students should discuss how light, water, nutrients, and space impact plant growth. Students should design an experiment changing the amount of light or water their plants receive. Discuss how this type of experiment could simulate human impacts on ecosystems.
  2. Students should write predictions of plant growth for both control and experimental plants in their science notebooks, including pictures.
  3. Each student should plant beans in their cups, discussing how the needs of seeds differ from the needs of plants.


Students conduct research on the type of seed planted and how it is used in cooking or as a natural resource.

Students examine how different environmental conditions (global warming, drought, etc.) effects crops.


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