Planting MANY bean plants will address Life Science standards for most grade levels. Planting the bean seeds at intervals or for several days, will give ALL students the opportunity to observe the life cycle of a bean plant, the effects of environmental conditions on a plant, and similarities and differences in plants of the same species. Even when plants are grown on the same day, at the same time, and with the same variables, they will not all grow at the same rate or as well (in reference to height, number of leaves, flowers, and bearing fruit). Natural variations in growth provide opportunities for observation, discussion, and argument based on evidence. I have included teacher visual demonstrations for a class of varying degrees of visual abilities. Modeling the activity is a very important first step for all science lessons and for all students. When the teacher models the lesson while reviewing the procedure, any last minute changes can be made as needed by the classroom teacher as well as the TVI (teacher of the visually impaired). If there are only one or two students with visual impairments in the class, the TVI should allow the student to feel each material as the teacher demonstrates and explains the procedure to the class. Ideally, the student’s TVI will have a matching set of the materials. When additional materials are not available, the classroom teacher can pass the materials to the TVI, who will pass and explain or describe the materials to the student with visual impairments. The student does not need to complete the lesson at this time, just become familiar with the materials they will be using. Exposing the student who is visually impaired to the instructions and materials prior to a science activity reduces confusion, reluctance and anxiety when encountering a new experience.
- Remind students not to put any materials in their nose, ears, or mouth.
- Keep their hands away from their face until their hands are washed.
- Use “wafting” or open hand, technique to smell materials when given permission to smell.
- Goggles or glasses may be used to prevent accidental eye injuries.