Flowers and Plants Preschool Learning Unit

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Whether you learn thematically or like to teach that way, here are some fun activities to do with your child as you learn about flowers and plants. While these activities are targeted towards preschoolers 3-5 years old, many of the fun things listed here can be modified for toddlers 1-2 years old.


Coffee Filter Flowers

Materials: watercolor paints, paintbrush, coffee filters, pipe cleaners

Paint one coffee filter at a time. Let them hang dry. Once dry, twist the middle of the coffee filter to the size of flower you want. Wrap the pipe cleaner around the twisted part of the coffee filter.

Flower Marble Painting

Materials: pre-cut flower shape out of paper, pie or cake tin, tape, marbles, washable tempera paint

Place pre-cut flower shape in pie tin (tape it down if it will not stay in one place). Squirt some big drops of paint in the colors desired. Place marbles in and move pie tin around to make the marbles move through the paint and all over the paper. Lay out to dry.

Still Life Painting of Flowers or Plants

Materials: vase with flowers or plants, paper, watercolor paints or tempera paints. (If drawing still life, use crayons, markers, colored pencils or oil pastels)

Place the vase where the child can see it clearly and encourage them to paint or draw what they see. Discuss details they notice about the object.

Flower Stamping

Materials: different types of flowers, paper, tempera paint

Dip the different flowers in the paint and stamp them on the paper.

Garden Collage

Materials: grass, leaves, petals, pebbles, tissue paper, sequins… (really anything you would like to have in your garden collage), glue, Q-tips (I like to use Q-tips to apply glue to paper or to objects)

Encourage your child to create their dream garden! Ask them questions about what they would like in their garden: what kind of flowers or plants? Any fruits or vegetables? Apply glue to paper, and then objects to the glue. Lay out to dry.

Block Play

Items to add to your block area: artificial flowers and plants, plastic or terracotta pots, gardening tools, gardening gloves. Place pictures of gardens, plants and flowers around your block area for inspiration.

Science & Nature

Grow Grass or Flowers

Materials: seeds of choice, soil, transparent little tote, water

Involve the kids in the planting process. Follow directions on packet for seeds you chose to plant. Monitor and track growth over time.

Label Parts of a Flower

Materials: pre-cut seeds, petals, stems, leaves, roots, construction paper, label stickers (either for you to write on or for kids to write on)

Discuss how plants start from roots, grow into a stem, leaves and petals sprout, and making seeds in the middle of the flower.

Make a Rain Gauge

Materials: empty 2 liter bottle, small rocks or pebbles, permanent marker, ruler, scissors (or box cutter), tape

Cut off the top of the bottle a few inches from the spout. Put the rocks in the bottom of the pop bottle about an inch thick. Starting after the rock layer, and using the ruler, mark the bottle every inch or half inch. Turn the top of the bottle (that you cut off) upside down and tape it on the rest of the bottle so the spout is pointing down, making a funnel.

Soda Bottle Terrariums

Materials: empty 2 liter bottle with cap, small rocks or pebbles, soil, water, hardy small plants, scissors or box cutter, tape

Cut open bottle a little over halfway to the top. Layer the bottom with rocks, then soil. Put the plants in the soil. Tape the top of the bottle back on. Leave the cap on the bottle to keep in the moisture. Put in a sunny place and water according to the directions of the plants contained.

Seeds for the Birds

Materials: big pinecones, string, peanut butter, all kinds of seeds (or birdseed) in a bag

Tie string to the top of a pinecone. Tie string in a loop so it is able to hang from somewhere. Roll pinecone in peanut butter. Put peanut butter covered pinecone in the bag of birdseed and shake until the whole pinecone is covered in seeds. Hang outside for the birds to enjoy!

Math & Manipulatives

Play-Dough Flower Tray

Materials: colorful play-dough, flower cookie cutters, buttons, colorful transparent gems, sequins, pipe cleaners, pom-poms, leaves (anything you want to make flowers with)

I like to separate materials into tinker trays or serving platters with multiple sections or even silverware containers. You can sort out the materials accordingly and let the children create for themselves!

Sorting Parts of a Flower

Materials: leaves, petals, stems (can be artificial or real), 3 transparent containers, labels (leaves, petals, stems)

Discuss the differences between leaves, petals and stems. Have the children sort accordingly.

Fine Motor Sunflower Seeds 

Materials: tweezer, big sunflower with seeds still in it

Show the kids how to use a tweezers. Allow them to pick out the seeds and put them in a bowl.

Fine Motor Flowers with Colander

Materials: Colander, artificial flowers

Push flower stems through holes in colander

Dramatic Play

Flower Market/Store

Materials: artificial flowers and plants, vases, baskets, aprons, gardening gloves, cash register, bags, and tissue paper to wrap flowers in.

Help the kids create a flower market to design arrangements, sell and buy flowers.

Sensory Play

Mud Play

Materials: Dirt and water to make mud

Start out experimenting with water and dirt to see what kind of textures you can make. Eventually add tools like shovels, hand rakes, and sand molds to work with in the mud.

Planting Flowers

Materials: Dry dirt, shovels, stones, artificial flowers and plants, small pots

Plant a flower garden or pot flowers in your sensory table!

Cooking Activities

Green Trees

Materials: long pretzel sticks, green grapes

Build a tree on a flat surface using the pretzel sticks as the trunk and branches, and the green grapes as leaves.

Eating Parts of a Plant

Materials: seeds (any kind to eat: sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds…), broccoli, celery, spinach, carrots, labels

Label the food accordingly: seeds-seeds, flower-broccoli, stem-celery, leaves-spinach, roots-carrots. You are eating parts of a plant!

Daffodil Snack Cups 

Materials: pre-cut yellow flowers, mini cups peeled clementine oranges

Tape pre-cut yellow flowers to the bottom of mini cups. Put peeled and sliced (not cut, just peeled apart) in the mini cups.

Practical Life

Sweeping dirt into dustpan

Materials: hand broom, dust pan, dirt, colored masking tape

Tape a square shape on the floor. Use hand broom to sweep dirt into square. Once dirt is swept into square, sweep into dust pan and pour into dirt bin (or garbage if you are using regular floor dirt and dust!)

Extension: As the child becomes more proficient in sweeping, you will no longer need the taped shape on the ground as a target. They will be able to sweep right into the dust pan.

Leaf Washing

Materials: plant with medium-large leaves, cotton balls, small dish with water

Dip cotton ball in water dish and very gently scrub the top of the leaves one by one, while holding the bottom of each leaf with your other hand. Let leaves air dry.

Caring for Household Plants

Materials: Hardy indoor or outdoor plants, watering can, colored tape, water

Find some hardy plants that can be kept indoors or outside on your patio or porch. Mark in watering can with colored tape how much water should be used on the plants. Follow directions for particular plants or flowers watering frequency.

Music & Movement

Pick a Flower Large Motor Activity

Materials: can, popsicle sticks, pre-cut paper flowers, writing utensil, glue

Write a large motor movement on the pre-cut flowers. Glue the pre-cut flower to a popsicle stick. Complete as many as you would like. Put all that are complete into a can, flowers pointing up. Take turns picking a flower and performing the large motor activity listed.

Here are some ideas: jumping jack, jump on 1 foot 5 times, roll around on the floor, scream as loud as you can, reach as high as you can, touch your toes, do a sit up or a push up, lay like a dead bug with your legs and arms up in the air…


“Inch by Inch, Row by Row”

“The Farmer Plants the Seeds”

“Sing a Song of Flowers”

“Parts of a Flower”

“The Plant Song”

Literacy & Writing

Flower Petal Name Match

Materials: pre-cut petals with letters of the alphabet on them, pre-cut yellow circles, pencils, glue

Help child write their name in a circle in the pre-cut yellow circles. Match petals with the appropriate letters in their name. Glue petals onto yellow circle piece. Lay out to dry.

Plant Life Cycle Book

Materials: small rectangle pieces of paper, stapler, colored pencils

Discuss the plant life cycle: seeds-roots-stem-leaves-flower. Draw a picture and write the word of each part of the cycle on a page. (exp: for seeds, draw seeds in the ground. On the bottom of the page, help the child write “seeds”.) When finished with all pages, staple together.

Name writing

Materials: paper, glue, Q-tips, seeds

Write name on paper. Use Q-tips to spread glue over lines of written name. Sprinkle seeds on glue until the glue is completely covered. Shake off the extra seeds and lay out to dry.

Books to check out:

The Tiny Seedby Eric Carle

Planting a Rainbow, by Lois Ehlert

From Seed to Plant, by Gail Gibbons

The Dandelion Seed, by Joseph Anthony

The Carrot Seed, by Ruth Krauss

Flower Garden, by Eve Bunting

If You Plant a Seed, by Kadir Nelson

Large Group Activities


Talk/act out the plant life cycle- start out low as seeds, grow slowly, go through wind (big waves) and rain (little waves), reach up high to the sun.

Sense of Smell

Pass around different kinds of flowers and plants. Chart and graph what plants kids like the best.

The Little Gardener by Jan Geradi

Act out with the story what it would be like to be a flower. Start out as a seed, crouching low to the ground. Grow and get taller, go through wind and rain, growing leaves and flowering.

Color Matching Flowers and Stems

Have pre-cut flowers and stems with matching colors in a basket. Pass the basket around and have each child grab one item. When everyone has one, take turns letting each child find the stem color that matches their color flower or vise versa.


Enjoy! What are some flower and plant activities you’ve tried with your preschoolers and loved? Comment with them below so other all of us can enjoy these activities together!

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