Saturday, July 9, 2011

My Mystery Bulbs

A few days ago I noticed the circle around the tree on my front lawn was full of weeds.  But being me, I decided that rather than just weeding, I would also remove all of the old bulbs that were crammed into the small space.  So that is what I have been doing.  It took me about six hours but I did it.  There were a whole lot of bulbs so, being me, I decided to count them ... 240 bulbs!  That's right... 240 bulbs!  That's a whole lot of bulbs in a very small space.  As I was digging them out, I started to think of them as my "mystery bulbs".  I knew there were a few daffodils, a few tulips, a few irises, and lots of gladiolas - all of them 5 to 15 years old. So now that I had them out, I had to decide what to do with my mystery bulbs.

My idea:  take the mystery bulbs to school in October.  Have the students examine and compare the huge variety of bulbs.  They can compare them by size, share, and color.  Then the students could each plant a few.  (Hey - I have enough for every student at my grade level!!!)  Then we wait and see what happens.  Will a flower grow from the bulb?  If so, what type of flower?

This idea reminds me of something we did each year when I taught first grade.  This idea is from my very creative teaching partner, Terry.  In October we collected used one gallon plant pots from parents.  We purchased enough daffodil bulbs for each child to plant four bulbs, along with a large bag of soil.  On October 31, as part of our Halloween "party" each child was given a pot and three bulbs to plant.  These pots went home that day with a letter giving parents directions.  Each child also planted one bulb at school (either in a pot or in the ground depending on where each first grade class was located).  As spring neared we would watch the progress of our daffodils at school.  Students also watched and reported on the progress at home.  Blooming daffodils are one of the first signs that spring is coming.  Great fun!

Daffodil Letter to parents

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