Project Based Learning | Plant Unit 1st Grade

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This Project Based Learning Unit, PBL, all about Plants for 1st grade students will be your complete guide to teaching your students all about the parts, genetics and functions of plants. The unit was built using Project Based Learning Guidelines and 1st grade NGSS Science Standards.


Teaching students through Project Based Learning can be overwhelming, but it is also fun, interactive and rewarding. I have spent months creating this unit to guide you and your students in learning about plants. It is very time consuming but I have done the work for you.

With your students you will be able to teach them all about the parts of plants, their functions, do activities with the parts of plants, grow your own plants using experimental methods, read about plants in Close Reading articles and Mini Books, do sequence writing with informational articles, craftivities, inquiry based Science Stations, dissect, make a plant flip book, figure out what plants we can eat, and end it all with a culminating event.



  • Step by Step Lesson Plans for over 18 days. I guide you through each lesson and prepare you along the way.
  • Driving Question that is 1st grade appropriate
  • PBL Steps: I follow the Project Based Learning Concept and include each part in the unit.
  • Entry Event that will help your students to get excited about their next unit. It will peak their interest.
  • Inquiry Based Activities: These activities are perfect for Science Inquiry Centers. It will help your students to think deeper.
  • Inquiry Based Questions to use whole group or in a small group
  • Planting Experiment to help students see exactly what plants need to grow
  • Dissecting Flowers Experiment to help students look a little closer at the inside plants and the similarities and differences between plants.
  • 4 Mini Books About Plants (Differentiated) and What Plants we can eat. These books work great as independent work, in science stations, or whole group.
  • Activities to use with each of the Mini Books
  • Close Reading Article About the Parts of Plants (Differentiated)
  • Comprehension Questions that go with the close reading article
  • Sequencing Mini Lesson and additional activities to use with sequencing
  • Sequencing Writing Lesson for the Life cycle of Plants
  • Writing Craftivity that looks great up on the bulletin board
  • Bulletin Board Idea (parts not included)
  • Eating the Parts of Plant Activities. Students love learning about which plants they eat every day and learning to try new ones.
  • Technology Uses and Ideas
  • Plant Journal to keep track of their plants each, it includes questions to answer.
  • Parts of Plant Flip Book is a great activity to show what they have learned and helps them tell others about it.
  • Extension Activities are great for advanced learners or if you need more activities
  • Interactive Lessons. Most of the lessons included are very interactive and get students out of their seats, working with others and doing more than worksheets
  • Song about the Parts of Plant. This is fun to practice to learn the parts of plants and is cute for the Culminating Event.
  • 12 Vegetable Posters (Parts of Plants). These go with the section where students are learning about which parts of the plant they are eating. They go well inside the Inquiry Science Centers for those activities.
  • Parts of Plants Poster. To be displayed in the room
  • Assessment Ideas to use along the unit
  • End of Unit PBL Project: Each PBL unit has a problem to solve, students get to solve the problem
  • Culminating Event Ideas. This is a guide on how a culminating event can be done with this unit.
  • Rubric
  • Answer Keys/Samples



Since this unit is a Project Based Learning Unit, it includes the standards from various subject areas. Depending on your ELA and Writing Block, many of the activities in this unit can be used during that time.

Also, many of the activities work very well in Inquiry Science Centers or for small group rotations.

The mini books and Close Reading can be used during a reading block.

Check out our blog article for more details on how this will look in your classroom.






** There are too many standards to list, see the preview or the list in the actual listing



There are differentiation scattered throughout the unit. Here are a few examples:

  • Mini Books (2 levels)
  • Close Reading Articles (2 levels)
  • Worksheets
  • Inquiry Based Centers
  • Comprehension Questions
  • Sequencing
  • Writing Portion

You may also be interested in my Project Based Learning Unit on the Patterns in Nature, Solar System Unit.

If you are looking for a smaller version on Plants, check out our Edible Plant Parts Lab. It is an interactive Inquiry Science Lab.

Here is the link for the 2nd Grade PBL Plant Unit.

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As always, please contact me with any questions.

Thank you so much,

Special Treat Friday, Heather McKinsey

Total Pages
285 pages
Answer Key
Included with rubric
Teaching Duration
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Make observations to construct an evidence-based account that young plants and animals are like, but not exactly like, their parents. Examples of patterns could include features plants or animals share. Examples of observations could include leaves from the same kind of plant are the same shape but can differ in size; and, a particular breed of dog looks like its parents but is not exactly the same. Assessment does not include inheritance or animals that undergo metamorphosis or hybrids.
Read texts and use media to determine patterns in behavior of parents and offspring that help offspring survive. Examples of patterns of behaviors could include the signals that offspring make (such as crying, cheeping, and other vocalizations) and the responses of the parents (such as feeding, comforting, and protecting the offspring).
Use materials to design a solution to a human problem by mimicking how plants and/or animals use their external parts to help them survive, grow, and meet their needs. Examples of human problems that can be solved by mimicking plant or animal solutions could include designing clothing or equipment to protect bicyclists by mimicking turtle shells, acorn shells, and animal scales; stabilizing structures by mimicking animal tails and roots on plants; keeping out intruders by mimicking thorns on branches and animal quills; and, detecting intruders by mimicking eyes and ears.
Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning words and phrases by using context clues, analyzing meaningful word parts, and consulting general and specialized reference materials, as appropriate.
Make strategic use of digital media and visual displays of data to express information and enhance understanding of presentations.


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