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Lesson Plan Title : Following the Sun

Age Range: Grade 3 through grade 5 (Elementary)

Overview and Purpose: Students observe two plants. One is kept in direct sunlight and the other out of direct sunlight. The students record the changes that they see. They are watching to see if either plant will lean towards the sun.

Objective: The student will be able to describe how a plant follows the sun.


Two potted flowers




Show the students the two flowers and ask them what they think will happen if one is kept in direct sunlight and one is not. Discuss their answers. Explain that for a week they're going to observe the two plants. One will be placed in direct sunlight and one will be kept out of the sunlight inside a box that has been turned on its side. Have the students draw a picture of each plant and write a description in their journals. Wait three days and have the students observe the plants again and record their observations in their journals. Discuss any changes and why they think the changes occurred. Wait three more days and then observe the plants a final time. Again, have the students record their observations and discuss what they see.

Wrap Up:

This experiment will work best with flowers that follow the sun, such as the sunflower. However, all plants will follow the sun to some degree.


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