Friday, April 28, 2017

Fibonacci Sequence Books for Children

If you had asked me a month ago about the fibonacci sequence, I would have said, "I think I've heard of that." I certainly would not have said that I'd be reading fibonacci books to my kids.

Then my husband said he wanted to burn a fibonacci pattern into wood like this using high voltage electricity. The kids have loved learning about Benjamin Franklin and electricity, so I had to admit, that would be cool. We haven't done it yet but if we do I'll be sure to share a photo.

The next day, I saw this book, and I couldn't resist...

What's nice about Growing Patterns is that it's simple and short. You could read a book like this and then go count flower petals and paint pinecones.

Along the same lines, I'm eyeing Wild Fibonacci. The illustrations look beautiful:

And then there's Blockhead for those who like the history and personal side of things. Mine have been enjoying biographies so this was right up that alley:

Another book I'm eyeing is The Rabbit Problem:

This one calls out to me because it presents the basis for understanding animal population growth (decline is another matter entirely!). If your family is interested in ecosystems and how animals fit into them, this looks like a fun way to explore a related concept. It also explains why you won't get your child an unneutered male and female pair of anything. Next thing you know, you'll have a house full of rabbits!

Not enough fibonacci for you? Look! Art inspired by the Fibonacci sequence.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Parts of a Plant

Where we live, it's almost time to plant a garden, and the perfect time to talk about plants. Here are PreK-2 ideas to get you started!

  • Dissect a plant. Pull up a weed such as clover and talk about the different parts of a plant. Here's a cool diagram.
  • Roots: Water and the Nitrogen Cycle 
  • Stem: Capillary Action

  • Leaves
    • Oxygen and Carbon DiOxide: If you stick a leaf under water in the sun, after a few hours, bubbles of Oxygen will form.
    • Photosynthesis (Glucose, Chloroplasts/Chlorophyll)
    • Plant ID: Collect leaves and ID plants with these free ID Cards.
      • Get really crazy by studying simple v. compound, alternate v. opposite, pinnate, palmate, parallel, and entire, serrate, undulate, crenate, and lobed
  • Flowers: A simple google search will turn up a ton of flower parts diagrams.
    • Bees!
    • After flowers comes...
  • Fruits & Seeds:
    • Fruits & Vegetables: Here's another opportunity to dissect the real thing! Can you find the seeds in a strawberry and a tomato? What part of the plant does spinach come from? Carrots?

At, under Life Science Extras, you'll see worksheets for parts of the plant, photosynthesis, and the root system.

Here's a nice book to help you out:

"From Seed to Plant" by Gail Gibbons

Have fun!