During our introduction to botany for kids, one of Ella’s favourite activities was this simple flower dissection.
Not only was this a great science activity for kids, it also has some built-in fine motor challenges and sensory stimulation.
By allowing your child to dissect a single flower, you allow them to develop a true understanding of the parts of the flower and they will likely be more excited to learn about those parts of the flower than if they were simply reading or hearing about them.
You don’t need any special equipment to attempt your own flower dissection, and you don’t have to be a botany buff, either!
Materials for Flower Dissection:
- flower – even one that is past it’s prime
- lunch tray
- parts of a flower 3-part cards (or play dough mats)
How to Dissect a Flower
Encourage your child to carefully pull apart or cut off each part of the flower. This is a great opportunity to practice self-control and exercise that pincer grip! In order to keep the parts intact, children must be firm but careful in dissecting their flower.
As your child removes each part from the flower, either tell them or ask them what part of the flower it is. Have them glue each part onto their paper, and if they are starting to write, have them label each part. Working in an orderly, logical way lays the foundation for good work ethic, and will contribute to the success of future science experiments and observations.
If you want to preserve your child’s flower dissection, you can laminate the flower art. Otherwise, the flower will start to deteriorate with time.
We really enjoyed this simple science activity for kids and it was really good for developing Ella’s awareness as to the structure of a flower and helping her remember the names of it’s various parts. We talked about how the petals protected the pistel and stamen, and how the leaves made the stem of the flower stronger. We considered how different colours and structures of petals might affect which insects are attracted to the flower.
I love how this activity encourages children to think beyond the pretty presentation of a flower and delve a bit more into how that pretty nature might support a (perhaps more interesting) function and purpose.
What do you think? Would you allow your child to dissect a flower from your garden or a fresh bouquet?
Be sure to check out our other botany for kids ideas, including the Montessori Practical Life activity of arranging flowers and our flower yoga poses.
Also, if you’d like to see a video of a similar flower dissection activity, Unbound Learners used our activity as inspiration in one of her preschool circle times. I loved the structure of her circle time and it would be a great one to check out if you want a Montessori-style circle time at home without needing to do it yourself.