We purchased three Amaryllis bulbs as well as two Hyacinth bulbs to plant with the class. We showed the students all five boxes that contained the bulbs and they immediately were excited to plant all of them! One by one, we followed the instructions and created labels to stick on each container noting the difference in colour and type of bulb we were planting. We planted a white, red and white swirl, and red Amaryllis, as well as a pink and purple Hyacinth.
During this process, the students formulated many observations, hypotheses, and wonder questions:
“They’re all bulbs but they use different materials to grow.” A.P. (referring to the Amaryllis bulbs placed in soil and the Hyacinth bulbs placed in water.)
“When I was looking at the white and the red and white swirl Amaryllis, I noticed both had red dots on their bulbs. I wonder why? All the other ones don’t.” B.S.
“One Hyacinth is already starting to sprout! I think it’s the pink one!” G.B.
“The pink Hyacinth roots has started and the purple one has not.” D.S.
“Why is the purple bulb round and we can see it, and the Amaryllis bulbs we can’t see the bulbs?” M.P.
“Why are the Hyacinth bulbs in water and glass and the Amaryllis bulbs are in soil?” E.S.
The students continued to observe the bulb plants daily noting their quick changes from day to day:
“The white Amaryllis used to be leaning and now it rised up.” A.M.
“I think the white Amaryllis was scared and that’s why it was tipped over. R.W.
“I saw that the white Amaryllis was growing.” E.E.
“I don’t know why the white Amaryllis has a brown thing around it on the bottom?” C.M.
“Why is there something squishy pushing up from the Amaryllis?” W.E.
“The white Amaryllis is sprouting!” D.S.
“The squishy part is popping up!” W.E.
“The pink Hyacinth has longer roots.” E.H.
“I see a purple stripe on top of the white Amaryllis.” A.P.
“The Hyacinths have the same roots because they’re the same colour.” R.H.
“The Amaryllis white is the biggest, the other two are small.” K.E.
“Why does the pink Hyacinth have more roots than the purple one when they’re the same?” O.S.
“Why is the white Amaryllis bigger than the red one?” K.W.
“Why is the white Amaryllis the bigger than the other ones?” C.M.
“Because we planted the white one first.” E.S.
“The pink Hyacinth is sprouting and going green.” A.M.
“Why is the red, and the red and white swirl Amaryllis the same height and not growing?” H.S.
“I see that the pink Hyacinth is growing more roots, they are longer than the other one.” P.I.
“Why is the pink Hyacinth sprouting and the purple one not?” O.S.
“The pink in is growing faster because it’s taller.” A.T.
“The pink Hyacinth is growing faster because it has a green point.” K.W.
“The red Amaryllis is the tallest.” B.K.
“Why do the Hyacinths both have roots but only one is sprouting?” A.M.
The students loved using their “measuring sticks” to track the growth of each bulb, documenting their daily tracking on our bulb plant chart.
“Today I measured the Amaryllis white and it was really high. I remember last week it was a little shorter, but when we came back on Monday it was a little taller.” B.S.
"Do all bulb plants require the same things to grow?" Mrs. Ralph
“The Hyacinth grows in a jar of water and the Amaryllis grows in soil.” D.S.
“Why do you think that is?” Mrs. Ralph
“I think it will grow because it has a lot of water.” I.R.
“I think it’s going to grow because it has a lot of water.” H.S.
“Maybe it will grow faster than both the small Amaryllis.” R.W.
“Why don’t we take one of the hyacinths out and put it in dirt?” C.M.
“Yea! We can get another Hyacinth and try and see if it grows in soil or not?” A.M.
Taking C.M. and A.M’s suggestion, we decided to create an experiment and place another Amaryllis bulb in water, and place the pink Hyacinth bulb in soil to see what would happen. The students continued to observe the bulb plants daily, and document their observations through various mediums (e.g., drawing, writing, sketching, painting, and conversing).
“The white Amaryllis has more flowers. They have six petals.” A.T.
“The Amaryllis in the water is getting softer because the roots look puffy.” N.S.
“The red Amaryllis is getting taller than the stick.” E.E.
“Why is the red Amaryllis tallest now if the white Amaryllis was tallest first?” O.S.
“Why is the water not clear?” G.M. (referring to the Amaryllis in water)
“The Amaryllis in water looks the same as before. It hasn’t grown and it’s more green.” A.P.
“Why is this one opening (pointing to the red Amaryllis), and this one dying (pointing to the white Amaryllis), and this one is still closed?" C.D. (pointing to the red and white swirl Amaryllis)
“I think the red and white swirl Amaryllis is growing like grass. It has six leaves.” H.S.
“I see the roots are falling in the water.” E.H. (referring to the Amaryllis in water)
“It’s not growing, it’s the same size as when we took it out of the box. I think it has too much water.” O.S. (referring to the Amaryllis in water)
“I smelled it and it didn’t smell very good. Maybe because it’s not growing?” E.H. (referring to the Amaryllis in water)
“The water is dirty. Maybe we need to put in some new water?” N.S. (referring to the Amaryllis in water)
“The bulb is getting bumpy because it’s drinking water.” (referring to the Amaryllis in water)
“Why is the water dirty in the Amaryllis jar and the Hyacinth has clear water?” D.S.
“I think the Amaryllis in water has dirty roots and made the water dirty.” B.S.
One morning, as the students walked into class, they noticed a big change in the white Amaryllis in soil.
“I think we touched it too much and it’s dying!” G.B.
“I think so too!” D.S.
“I don’t think we gave it enough water.” A.P.
“We kept turning the pot to look at it and it’s not facing the light!” E.H.
“When we put it on the shelf at night it doesn’t get enough light from the Atrium like it does on the table where it has more life.” E.S.
“Why is the white Amaryllis starting to crumble?” G.B.
“I think we touched the petals too much.” M.P.
“Maybe it’s too hot in the room because of the lights and it started to wilt.” B.S.
“I don’t think that the white Amaryllis likes the lights because it’s not the sun.” W.E.
During one of our knowledge building circles, E.S. stated: “There’s no seeds inside the bulb. It’s actually like a bulb within a bulb!”
“Yes there is! There’s seeds inside the bulb!” G.B.
“This is like an argument.” E.S.
"It’s actually a debate. A debate means that there are two different opinions being stated." Mrs. Ralph
"Maybe we can buy another bulb and we don’t plant it, instead we can cut it and we can see what’s inside!” E.H.
“Maybe there’s seeds in one compartment and non in the other.” A.P.
“I think the bulb has seeds inside it too.” K.W.
"What is a seed? What is a bulb? Are they the same thing?" Mrs. Ralph
“Seeds are tiny. Bulbs are big.” E.H.
More exciting investigations and revelations to come!