Lesson Plans by Grade Level

Pre-school

Farms & Cities By considering the similarities and differences in living on a farm or in the city, students can begin to recognize that people live in many different environments. (Kentucky Farm Bureau) MO SELS: 4b, 4d

Good Food Explorers Group activities about food help students with recognition of common shapes, utilization of 5 senses, and development of skills in identifying similarities and differences. (KFB) MO SELS: 4e

Plan a Meal Nutrition-related activities help students to recognize a variety of foods and food groups and make associations between the foods they eat and the way they feel (KFB) MO SELS: 1a, 1c, 4e

Where does food come from? Young children often do not have a clear understanding of the agriculture source for the foods they eat. This activity helps students to recognize that food comes from both plant and animal sources. (KFB) MO SELS: 1a, 1c, 2c, 4b, 4e

Nutrition Superheroes Nutrition Super Heroes is a game that gets young people on their feet and moving to learn about nutrition in the garden.  Each participant assumes a Nutrient Superhero “secret identity” such as calcium or vitamin C and must complete the obstacle course if a vegetable their nutrient (secret identity) is found in is called. (Cornell Garden-Based Learning)

Superhero Identity Cards

Veggie Cards

Grades K-3

Worm Bin Activity SARE MO SELS: 2a, 2c, 4d, 5a, 6d

Worm Bin Activity (Answer Key) SARE

Soil Activity SARE

Germination Activity SARE MO SELS: 2a, 2c

Farm Products Help Me Grow This lesson teaches the plant and animal sources of many common foods and emphasizes the correlation of dietary adequacy to good health and growth. Incorporate plant science into the lesson by having students learn about different parts of the plant that can be eaten. (KFB)  MO SELS: 1a, 1c, 2c, 2d, 4b, 4e

Food Choices: A Socio-Cultural Decision Eating is a social activity in that we share meals with family, friends, and classmates. Specific foods commemorate cultural and religious celebrations. Food choices is influenced by personal preference, nationality, region, and ethnic heritage. (KFB)

A Day without Ag This lesson plans discusses two questions. What is agriculture? and What are some ways that it affects my life every day? The lesson plan and student worksheets are available in English and Spanish language versions. (Oklahoma Ag. in the Classroom) MO SELS: 1a, 1c, 3c, 3d, 4b, 4e

Seed Match This activity allows to students to identify plant seeds and think about the different parts of common edible plants. (CA Foundation for Ag. in the Classroom) MO SELS: 2a, 2c, 4e

Nature Journaling: Leaf Matching How do scientists classify plants and determine that certain plants are related? In this activity students will look closely at leaves to see the many variations in shape, size, margins, or veins. They will identify leaves of the same plant based on these leaf characteristics. (MA Ag. in the Classroom) MO SELS: 2a, 2c, 4e

Vegetable Cousins In this activity, students will learn that the plants in the garden can be grouped in “families” and they will organize garden vegetables according to their similar traits in order to guess which ones are “cousins.” (MA Ag. in the Classroom) MO SELS: 2c, 2d, 4a, 4b, 4e, 5d

Bug Sweep In this activity, students make their own bug nets, catch, identify, and release the bugs back to the garden. Offers an opportunity to discuss pests versus beneficial bugs. (CA Foundation for Ag. in the Classroom) MO SELS: 1, 2c, 2d, 4b, 5g, 6b, 7c

Nutrition Superheroes Nutrition Super Heroes is a game that gets young people on their feet and moving to learn about nutrition in the garden.  Each participant assumes a Nutrient Superhero “secret identity” such as calcium or vitamin C and must complete the obstacle course if a vegetable their nutrient (secret identity) is found in is called. (Cornell Garden-Based Learning)

Super Powers Cards

Veggie Cards

A Butterfly’s Home Students determine which environmental characteristics make up a favorable habitat for butterflies. After brainstorming and creating collages of important characteristics, students design and build a butterfly garden. (Science Netlinks) MO SELS: 1a, 2b, 2c, 2d, 4a, 4d, 6d, 7a, 7c

What Parts are there to a plant? In this lesson, students will identify and sort plant parts through hands-on activities and group discussions and then work with magnifying lenses and tape measures to document their observations on a student sheet. MO SELS: 2a, 2c, 4e

Traveling Seeds In this activity students will learn that plants disperse their seeds away from the parent plants in In this activity students will learn that plants disperse their seeds away from the parent plants in different ways. They will observe some of the mechanisms that are used to disperse seeds and observe how the seeds travels. Students will then develop a new strategy for seed dispersal and test their method of release and travel. (MA Ag. in the Classroom) MO SELS: 2a, 2c, 2d, 4a, 4e

Potato Proliferation  In this activity students will determine the area of a garden bed, determine the area needed by a potato plant, figure out how many potatoes can fit in that bed, and then plant the potatoes. This is best suited for early June. (MA Ag. in the Classroom) MO SELS: 2a., 2c, 2d, 4b, 4e

Plant Roots Symbiosis Roots play an essential role in the growth and vigor of a plant. In this lesson, students will learn about root systems, the relationships between plants and the microbes in the soil, and how microbes in the soil enhance the growing of plants. (MA Ag. in the Classroom) MO SELS: 2a, 2c, 2d, 4b, 4e

Wild Beasts of the Soil! In this activity, students will bring some garden soil from the school garden and find out what macro-organisms live it it, and have the ability to observe them. (MA Ag. in the Classroom) MO SELS: 2c, 2d, 4a, 7c

Grades 4-6

MO Spring Weed ID CCUA  MO SELS: 2c, 4a

MO Spring Weed ID (Answer Key) CCUA

Balloon Plants Students work in teams to explore what plants need to grow. They fill balloons with potting soil. They drop radish seeds into the balloons, then add water and carbon dioxide and hang their balloons in the sun. They observe their balloons as the seeds sprout. (Oregon State) MO SELS: 1b, 2a, 2c, 4e

There’s a Watershed in My Backyard! Students will connect to information about conservation and protection of natural resources. They will understand how each person in a watershed – all of us – can work together to protect the quality and quantity of water for our use. (Kansas Ag. in the Classroom) MO SELS: 1a, 1c, 1d, 1e, 1h, 4, 5b, 5e, 5h, 5i, 6a, 6b, 7b, 7c, 7d

Understanding Carbon Footprint in Food Systems Mapping a chocolate cake & local food collage facilitate discussion of the impacts of global food systems, local food production, and understanding carbon footprint. (Cornell Garden-Based Learning) MO SELS: 1a, 1b, 1c, 1f, 2d, 3c, 4b, 4e, 5b, 5c, 5e, 5h, 5i, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7d, 7e

A Bug’s Life: Diary of an Insect’s Metamorphosis This lesson plan teaches students about insect metamorphosis by having the students play a game. Students will read the Insect Facts and then determine which phase of metamorphosis matches with each individual insect and its traits. (Utah Ag. in the Classroom)

Prairie Food Chains & Webs Explores the organisms found on the prairie and the various food systems that allow them to either eat or be eaten. (Kansas Ag. in the Classroom) MO SELS: 2, 4a

Follow-up Activity: Prairie Tic-Tac-Toe helps students to identify abiotic versus biotic prairie features and the roles of different organisms in transferring energy in the prairie ecosystem.

Ecosystem: The Essential Connection Students learn to define an ecosystem, to identify human impacts on ecosystems, and to think about responsible ways to live, produce food, and use energy while protecting the ecosystem. (KFB) MO SELS: 1a, 1b, 1c, 1f, 1h, 2d, 3, 4, 5b, 5c, 5f, 5h, 5i, 6a, 6b, 6c

        Missouri Agriculture Fact Sheet

Vegetable Varieties Investigation Multiday research project in which students learn about the importance of biodiversity & crop varieties then conduct interviews with local gardeners/farmers about their crop selection. Students record & report their data online. The toolkit includes background info on the VVI project, 9 activities introducing topics of biodiversity, & guidelines for conducting an interview, collecting & reporting data. (Cornell Garden-Based Learning) MO SELS: 1a, 1c,1e, 1f., 2c, 2d, 3b, 3c, 3d, 4b, 4d, 5d, 5g, 6b, 7

Designing a Wildflower Garden This lesson incorporates discussion of meadow habitats, wildflower identification, and design of a natural system to meet criteria. Students should develop the idea that complex systems can be controlled (e.g., garden) and that mechanisms (e.g., technology) can be designed for this purpose. In addition, they should learn that technology not only causes expected occurrences but it can also cause unexpected effects. (Science Netlinks) MO SELS: 1c, 1f, 1h,2c, 4a, 4b, 4e, 5g, 5h, 6c, 6d, 7c, 7d, 7e

Trees Give Us The lesson discusses the many ways in which trees benefit humans and the environment. This lesson includes an activity “Leaves are cool!” where students will

measure the temperature at different locations around the school and comparing the areas shaded by trees and those that are not. (MA Ag. in the Classroom) MO SELS: 1a, 1f, 2a, 2c, 2d, 3c, 4a, 4e, 5b, 5c, 5f, 5h, 5i

Saving our Genetic Heritage: Seed Banks Genetic diversity is vitally important for the health of any eco-system, our food production system being no exception. There are many reasons for this, for example, having a wide genetic gene pool is essential to plant breeders wishing to draw from different plant traits to breed for disease resistant

crops. This diversity in our food plants is currently at risk. In this activity students will learn about seed banks, and create their own seed bank by starting a seed library. Best done in the late fall or winter so that people can “borrow” seeds in time for the coming growing season. (MA Ag. in the Classroom) MO SELS: 1a, 1b, 1d, 1e, 1f, 2c, 2d, 4a, 4b, 4e, 5g, 5h, 5, 6a, 6b, 6d, 7a, 7c, 7e

Saving Your Seeds Plant snap bean seeds in the spring garden or plant a second crop around mid-summer for fall harvest. Allow some of the beans to grow about four weeks past the point where they are ready for harvest. In this activity students will learn about the life cycle of plants from seed to fruit to collecting the seeds inside the fruits. They will harvest pods of garden beans, separate the seeds from the pods, clean them and store them for the winter so that they can be planted in the spring. (MA Ag. in the Classroom) MO SELS: 1a, 2b, 2c, 2d, 4b, 4e, 7c

ID & Classification of Grassland Plants The purpose of this lesson is to have students observe basic plant structures and use that knowledge to be able to identify plants. This lesson provides students an opportunity to observe the similarities and differences among plant species. Students will identify grassland plants using a basic field guide and become familiar with how plants are classified into groups called families. (Science Netlinks) MO SELS: 2c, 4a, 7c

Grades 7-8

Urban Agriculture Introduction The United Nations Association of Greater Boston created the following lessons and activities for 7th-12th grade students. Although the lessons were originally written for the Model UN, they are appropriate for all students and teachers seeking to understand urban agriculture and its global impacts.MO SELS: 1a, 1b, 1f, 1g, 2c, 2d, 3b, 3c, 3d, 4b, 4d, 4e, 5e, 5f, 5g, 5i, 6a, 6b, 6c, 6d, 6e, 7b, 7c

Urban Agriculture & Poverty 

Follow-up Activities: These graphic organizers help students develop the ideas discussed in the UA & Poverty lesson.

        UA & Developed Frayer Model

        UA & Developing Frayer Model

Food Security 

Women & Health

Urban Agriculture & the Environment 

Follow-up Activity: Model UN students are typically assigned a country and topic to research. This document helps students develop an outline for a country’s position on urban agriculture. This activity can also focus on national urban agricultural developments and issues by assigning students a state to investigate. Writing a Position Paper

 

Farmers: Caretakers of the Land Natural resources of soil, water and air are vital to agricultural production. Management of natural resources to insure a healthy environment is a requirement for the farmer to produce food and fiber. Modern farming methods have evolved through the need for conservation. (KFB) MO SELS: 1a, 1b, 1c, 1f, 2a, 2b, 4b, 4e, 5b, 5c, 5e, 5f, 5g, 5h, 5i, 6a, 6b, 6c, 6d, 6e

ID & Classification of Grassland Plants The purpose of this lesson is to have students observe basic plant structures and use that knowledge to be able to identify plants. This lesson provides students an opportunity to observe the similarities and differences among plant species. Students will identify grassland plants using a basic field guide and become familiar with how plants are classified into groups called families. (Science Netlinks) MO SELS: 2c, 4a, 7c

Grow a Salsa Garden This lesson gives students a literal idea of where their food comes from and the processing that takes place with many of our foods. They will actually grow several of the foods that are included in their salsa recipe. They will design a recipe and run it by a “taste test” panel. They will discuss marketing and the economics of producing home grown foods. They will compare commercially processed salsa’s from the store with their home grown and processed salsa. (Kansas Farm Bureau) MO SELS: 2a, 2c, 4b, 4e

Be a Watershed - Create a Living River Students will learn how water moves in a watershed. Different scenarios (weather events, contamination, etc.) are posed so students can think critically about the watershed and water quality. (Kansas Ag. in the Classroom)  MO SELS: 1a, 1c, 1d, 1e, 1h, 2b, 2d, 4, 5b, 5e, 5f, 5h, 5i, 6a, 6b, 7b, 7c, 7d

Bubbles in the Cabbage Juice Students will conduct experiments with cabbage juice as an indicator to identify carbon in a variety of substances. Students will learn about organic matter in soils and acidic vs. alkaline soils. MO SELS: 2a, 2c

Eat Your Flowers Students read about edible flowers and conduct a scientific experiment with marigolds to test the effect of soil type. (Oklahoma Ag. in the Classroom) MO SELS: 2a, 2c, 2d, 4b, 4e

Woven Branch Art Students are encouraged to recycled pruned plant materials to create sculptures and manipulate materials into different forms. (Cornell University)

Vegetable Varieties Investigation Multiday research project in which students learn about the importance of biodiversity & crop varieties then conduct interviews with local gardeners/farmers about their crop selection. Students record & report their data online. The toolkit includes background info on the VVI project, 9 activities introducing topics of biodiversity, & guidelines for conducting an interview, collecting & reporting data. (Cornell Garden-Based Learning) MO SELS: 1a, 1c,1e, 1f., 2c, 2d, 3b, 3c, 3d, 4b, 4d, 5d, 5g, 6b, 7

Soil Erosion Students explore and verify that soil erosion is affected by the makeup of soil using plant roots, rocks, and the slope of the land as experimental factors. Students compare water flow and soil erosion over a bare soil pile and their own hillside gardens. (Science Netlinks) MO SELS: 1a, 1c, 1d, 1f, 1h, 2b, 2c, 4e, 5e, 5f, 5h, 5i, 6, 7

Asexual/Vegetative Plant Propagation Students will research methods of vegetative plant propagation. They will grow a plant by vegetative propagation and understand why it might be advantageous to do so. (Science Netlinks) MO SELS: 1a, 2a, 2c, 4b, 5g, 6b, 6d, 6e, 7c, 7d

Grades 9-12

Vegetable Varieties Investigation Multiday research project in which students learn about the importance of biodiversity and crop varieties then conduct interviews with local gardeners/farmers about their crop selection. Students record and report their data online. The toolkit includes background info on the VVI project, 9 activities introducing topics of biodiversity, & guidelines for conducting an interview, collecting and reporting data. (Cornell Garden-Based Learning) MO SELS: 1a, 1c,1e, 1f., 2c, 2d, 3b, 3c, 3d, 4b, 4d, 5d, 5g, 6b, 7

Using Field Notebooks for Biodiversity Students create field notebooks where they can record observations, produce drawings/illustrations, determine relatedness among species (classification), and develop questions about the plants and ecosystems they encounter in an outdoor field study. (Science Netlinks) MO SELS: 1e, 2c, 2d, 4a, 4d, 5g, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 7c

Grassland Plant Identification Students understand the fundamental methods of plant identification and to become familiar with their applications in science. This lesson gives students the tools to identify different parts of the plant and their characteristics; then students have the opportunity to identify local grassland species. MO SELS: 2a, 2c, 2d, 4a, 5f, 5g, 6b, 7c

Grassland Plant Classification As a follow up to plant identification lesson, plant classification provides students with an opportunity to explore how plant structures can be used to build phylogenetic trees. Students understand the fundamental methods of plant classification and to become familiar with their applications in science. MO SELS: 2a, 2c, 2d, 4a, 5f, 5g, 6b, 7c

Chemistry, Fertilizer, & the Environment A series of lesson plans that discuss mixing/dilution of chemicals (food color lab), concentrate to solution (molar mass calculations), the nitrogen cycle (gumdrop exchange at different interphase stations, i.e. atmosphere, soil, plant, etc.), pH & its impact on plant nutrient uptake (soil pH testing), and soil drainage & nutrient leaching (lab component = soil sampling, drainage & nitrate tests). Includes worksheets, lab procedures, and lesson plans for 5 interrelated lessons. (CA Foundation for Ag. in the Classroom) MO SELS: 1a, 1c, 1h, 2a, 2b, 2c, 2d, 4b, 4d, 4e, 5b, 5f, 5h, 5i, 6a, 6b, 7b, 7c

Woven Branch Art Students are encouraged to recycled pruned plant materials to create sculptures and manipulate materials into different forms. (Cornell University)

Sustainable Gardening Practices Youth will gain an understanding of the importance of their school garden project, in helping to stop climate change. They will reflect on different gardening practices they are doing and why these help the climate. (Cornell Garden-Based Learning)  MO SELS: 1f, 2c, 4b, 4e, 5a, 5b, 5c, 5h, 5i, 7c, 7d, 7e

Follow-up Activity: Steps to Sustainability Checklist of steps students can take to make their classroom/garden/homes more sustainable.

Agriculture & the Environment: An Interdependence In this lesson, students will define interdependence, become familiar with conservation terms, research a specific issue involving agriculture and the environment, and present strategies for safeguarding the environment. (KFB) MO SELS: 1a, 1b, 1c, 1f, 1h, 2c, 2d, 4b, 4e, 5, 6

Urban Agriculture Introduction The United Nations Association of Greater Boston created the following lessons and activities for 7th-12th grade students. Although the lessons were originally written for the Model UN, they are appropriate for all students and teachers seeking to understand urban agriculture and its global impacts. MO SELS: 1a, 1b, 1f, 1g, 2c, 2d, 3b, 3c, 3d, 4b, 4d, 4e, 5e, 5f, 5g, 5i, 6a, 6b, 6c, 6d, 6e, 7b, 7c

Urban Agriculture & Poverty 

Follow-up Activities: These graphic organizers help students develop the ideas discussed in the UA & Poverty lesson.

        UA & Developed Frayer Model

        UA & Developing Frayer Model

Food Security 

Women & Health

Urban Agriculture & the Environment 

Follow-up Activity: Model UN students are typically assigned a country and topic to research. This document helps students develop an outline for a country’s position on urban agriculture. This activity can also focus on national urban agricultural developments and issues by assigning students a state to investigate. Writing a Position Paper

Higher Education

Sustainable Gardening Practices Youth will gain an understanding of the importance of their school garden project, in helping to stop climate change. They will reflect on different gardening practices they are doing and why these help the climate. (Cornell University)

Follow-up Activity: Steps to Sustainability Checklist of steps students can take to make their classroom/garden/homes more sustainable.

Living Sculptures - Using soil, sod, and trees groups create imaginative works of art in the garden. Incorporates math, landscape design, and horticulture. (Cornell University)

Sod Sofa Sculpture Basic instructions for designing & building lawn furniture!

Living Dome Instructions on how to prune and train trees (apple, willow, etc.) to grow as fences, arches, and living domes.

Tapis Vert Instructions on employing math and mowing to create mazes, checkerboards, and patterns in the yard.