Discovering Wood for Kindergarteners

Kindergarten Wood Discovery Lab

Objective:  The student will be able to differentiate between 3 kinds of wood.        Materials:  small tub of water, sandpaper, poster of trees/tree books from library, tree literature:  Johnny Appleseed by Lindbergh; Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Martin/Archambault

Step 1:  Read literature and discuss the similarities/differences between the trees                   Step 2:  Display tree poster (I purchased mine at Lakeshore) of additional tree information

  • Estimate how many trees are in North America.  Write answers on white board.  Answer:  About 700 varieties  *You may want to introduce the continent of North America by using a map/globe.
  • How many trees are on Earth?  About 10,000

Step 3:  Distribute 3 samples of wood:  redwood, oak, and pine

  • Have students smell, touch, and observe the differences/similarities of each
  • Observe the Physical Properties:  color, hardness, smell

Step 4:  Sand each piece of wood

Step 5:  Put each piece into a tub of water–does it sink/float?  Why/Why not?

  • Answer:  If it floats, there is air inside because the wood has dried out.  If it sinks, the wood is heavy with oils.

Step 6:  Closure-Discuss uses of wood/trees–trees take Carbon Dioxide out of the air, and put Oxygen in the air for us to breathe.  Trees freshen the air.  They may be used to build houses, furniture, kitchens, etc.

Step 7:  Art Extension Activity:  Consider making a wooden storage box:

Have fun!

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