From a seed of inspiration to a sprout of reality, this project blossomed into a Buncee-fied beauty after my co-taught 4th-grade class dug into the dirt and began their gardening journeys. This lesson will intrigue your learners for weeks to come as they get their hands dirty and minds full of inspiration!
Created by: Amanda Glover
Age levels: 2-100 years old
Duration: Long-term investigation
Materials: Outdoor space, plants/seeds by region and season, gardening tools, garden bed, computers with internet access, Buncee
Scenario: Old McDonald had a farm, now let’s plant and grow! In order to help end global malnutrition and increase agricultural production, you will learn to become an Agricultural Engineer working for the Sustainable Development Goal Agriculture Firm and make progress toward solutions for the Sustainable Development Goal 2.
Scientific Topic: Life Science- Heredity and Reproduction, Interdependence, Organization and Development of Living Organisms
Explain to students that they are going to engage in a long-term investigation to fulfill Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 2 (Resource 1 and Resource 2, Page 11). Present students with the scenario on the Request to Build, and introduce them to the scenario by showing the following Youtube video. (Resource 6 and Resource 7)
Explain to the students that they are agricultural engineers who are working for an Agricultural Engineering firm. (Resource 5)
Introduce students to the Buncee Building Permit allowing them to write the Engineering Zone Challenge (summary of the scenario from the Request to Build) and begin creating an individual plan and materials list for which items they would like to plant and grow.
In small groups of 2-3, students will communicate their independent ideas in order to collaborate to combine ideas in which they create one comprehensive plan about which seeds and wherein their garden bed they wish to plant them. The group will then revise their materials list based on seasonal growing research and add a labeled blueprint of their team’s garden bed to the Buncee Building Permit.
Be sure students know the following variables which will be measured:
- How the plants will be measured?
- Number of blooms/fruits or vegetables
- Weather data
Other possible variables to measure;
- Soil moisture
- Soil erosion
- Develop/test plant support systems
Introduce students to Agricultural Engineering equipment innovations (Resource 4)
Plan/Design and Build/Test:
Once students have completed their blueprints and materials list revisions based on the previously stated parameters, the groups may begin gathering materials and constructing their solutions. The budget is up to the individual classroom teachers based on their procedures for managing materials and waste.
You can ask your students:
Who are your clients?
What types of products did you choose? Why?
How are these products going to satisfy your client’s needs?
What is the life cycle of your living organism?
How is your design going to prevent waste?
What are the building restrictions?
Is your design meeting the budget restrictions?
Is your design meeting the minimum size restrictions?
Students will preferably get to tend to their garden and collect data once per week updating data within the Buncee Building Permit. Be sure to track the weather and discuss the possible connection between plant growth/bloom and the temperature and precipitation.
Allow the groups to complete the reflection questions in order to complete the engineering design process in their Buncee Building Permit.
Buncee Building Permit:
To access, and copy the Buncee Building Permit, head to this link, and copy!
Lesson Extension Plan:
Students could be allowed to complete additional engineering design Buncee building permits based on the needs they identify such as plant support systems, irrigation, storage, transport, packaging, international shipping, and customs. Students can conduct extensive research into which international communities would need shipments of their harvest in order to end global malnutrition and create a Buncee Project Proposal. To find funding, students could also create Buncee infomercials to advertise their harvests and where they plan for their local crops to be shipped to. Students could plan a local Farmers Market through Buncee in order to raise funds for a local charity which could support the progress of SDG 2.