For a girl who wanted to get out of the midwest and move to the west coast, I sure do enjoy the planting season. I thoroughly enjoy watching the crops go into the soil, and then seeing the baby corn grow into tall stalks! Since we have fields right outside our home, I decided to develop a summer project that would help Caleb appreciate the growth of corn.
Last fall we picked up seed corn (not the same as sweet corn) out of the fields after harvest. And this is what it looks like, for you city folk, who've never need it!
I believe everything looks cooler closer up. While we've all seen corn, look at it! Isn't is beautiful? All lined up in straight rows...all that potential to become something great, if only put into the right environment. I'll resist the urge to go into an object lesson here, but you get the point.
Then, just this past week, the corn poked out of the soil. Oh, the cute baby corn!
Here's Caleb as we photograph our inside corn and observe the structures of root and stem!
It took a lot of persuasion to get Caleb out into the field. I just couldn't get him excited about my big corn project! UNTIL, a good friend of mine, Brenda, mentioned to me that I should have him measure the corn using his Lego Guys...bingo. That was it. That is just the motivation he needed. So out we went.
I also made it a "treasure hunt" of sorts in that we randomly chose 4 corn plants to measure, and we made a treasure map so we would remember which plants to measure next time. Currently that means, 10 steps past our mailbox, 1st row...that's plant A. Count 13 plants to the left, that's plant B. You get the idea.
Measuring with Lego Guys was a great idea, but it took both of us to line them up along the baby stalk. All four of our corn data points were either 3 or 4 Lego Guys high. I'm hoping that I'll be able to help Caleb make the connection of Lego guys and centimeters (although I'm pretty sure the Lego guys will translate better into inches..oh well.)
I had Caleb's attention for measuring the first 3 plants, but not for the last one. Instead he wanted to jump between corn rows. It will be fun to compare these photos to the ones I'll take in the fall. Ah, I really do like the midwest.
What have you done to help your kids understand the concept of distance and measuring?
This is the first post in the series, "Corn Unit." You may want to read the other posts in this series.
Here are the other posts in our Corn Unit Series:
This post is featured in the Online Magazine Bonbon Break.