Wildflower Research Project

As the weather warms up, and nature starts to awaken from its slumber, the beauty of the season begins to burst free. Much of that beauty is reoccurring in the form of wildflowers that can be found on the roadside or in private and public gardens. If you enjoy the colors and smells of Spring, you may find these activity suggestions inspiring enough to grow something on your own.

#1 As wildflowers bloom on the roadside, in your yard, in public gardens, or in your neighborhood, take pictures, and then spend some time learning how to identifying them.

Need help identifying wildflowers?



#2 Collect different types of wildflowers when possible, make a flower press, or learn how to preserve them. Think of some ways you can use the flowers: Cards, pictures, scrapbook pages, writing/drawing journal, wildflower identification cards, nature journal, poems, display them in a vase, etc.

#3 Grow your own wildflowers in an selected area, as a garden, or in a planter. By growing your own, you can keep track of what you have planted. Collect seeds at the end of their growing cycle and save them for the next growing season. Label them clearly so you know what you are growing.

#4 Take some time to sit and enjoy wildflowers. Observe the insects and other creatures that come to visit. Take pictures/videos, draw or write about them. What do they do? How long do they stay?

#5 As you learn about the wildflowers you identify, find out how they can be used. Which ones are edible and/or medicinal? Learn about the rules of collecting them in order to ingest them.

For example: You will not want to collect wildflowers on a roadside that has been sprayed with chemicals, or has a lot of car traffic, because they are not edible or usable medicinally. Also, some wildflowers need to be collected carefully and boiled to be enjoyed.

Most public gardens will ask you not to pick or cut flowers.

Tip: Grow your own wildflowers in areas away from the roadside if you would like to ingest them.

Something Fun To Do Index

Fun Pages Index

Fun Ways to Learn At A Public Garden

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Fingerprint Fun Page

Finish The Phrase

Research Challenge

How are fingerprints formed?

How many different types of fingerprints are there?

What purpose do fingerprints have and how are they used in modern times?

Who was the first to suggest using fingerprints to solve a crime?

When were fingerprints first used to solve a crime? What crime was committed?

Fingerprint Activities & Ideas

Fingerprint Maze

After printing your fingerprint, use it to inspire a homemade maze with a similar pattern.

Fingerprint Identification & Dusting

Learn how to lift a fingerprint off items and identify who the print belongs to in the household.

The video below shows how the pros lift fingerprints.

Spy for Kids offers some fun ways to make a kid-friendly, DIY spy kit, including a fingerprint kit.

Fingerprint Word Scramble

Online Puzzle

Online Puzzle: Summer Smiles – Make a puzzle to give to someone to solve.


Viewer Warning: The video link offered below has a really good history of fingerprints, but has a crude word between the 7:02-7:05 mark. Viewer discretion is advised.

Related Post

The following topic can be found on FranW.com

Learning with Ordinary Household Items – Use regular items from around the house to help create an excellent educational experience. This is an ongoing project.

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Soda Pop Project

Have you ever wondered how a simple thing like water can become so bubbly?
Mineral water, found in natural springs, gets its bubbles from carbon dioxide. Soda water imitates mineral water. 
How does water get infused with carbon dioxide to make the popular drinks many people enjoy today?

The following video resources offer the history of soda pop and explain how carbonated soda is made. You’ll find a few experiments tucked in there as well. Below the videos, you will find recipes for making your own healthier flavored carbonated beverages.

About: Introduction to Pop – The History of Soft Drinks – Find out how soda pop got its start. This site offers a timeline as well.


Soda Flavoring & Recipes

Herbs were added to unflavored mineral water and offered to people as a healthy drink. Today, many popular brands of soda are loaded with chemicals and artificial sweeteners. A healthier alternative is to make your own with natural ingredients. Here are some suggestions:

Note: You will need carbonated water, a.k.a seltzer water, for each of these flavored soda suggestions.

Apple, Grape, Orange, Lemon, or Fruit Punch Soda – Use a juice concentrate and exchange plain water with seltzer water.

Root Beer – Make your own root beer syrup with this recipe from Foodie with Family. Root Beer Float Day is August 6. Learn more about it here, on Fran’s World of Discovery. This post includes information and videos about root beer floats and its components.

Cola – Cola syrup can be purchased online and in stores.

Ginger Soda – Make a simple syrup by heating up equal amounts of sugar and water until the sugar is dissolved, then add two smashed, quarter-sized, pieces of fresh, peeled ginger to it. Allow everything to boil for a minute, cover and set aside to cool for 30 minutes. Strain the ginger out. Put 2 tablespoons of the syrup into a glass, add a cup of seltzer water, stir, add ice, and enjoy.

Chocolate Egg Cream – Chocolate soda makes up the base of this recipe, then milk is added to give it a creamy texture. You’ll find a delicious recipe for this old time treat here on Fran’s World of Discovery.

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Two Scottish Reindeer Photo by Adrian Pingstone

Did you know…

Reindeer are also known as caribou!

Make a caribou Diorama

They say a picture is worth a thousands words and dioramas are a great way to show

off what you have learned!

You will need:

  • Recycled box such as a shoe, cereal, cracker or pasta box
  • Pictures of a caribou’s habitat
  • Craft supplies including but not limited to: Clay or playdough, toothpicks, cotton balls, construction paper, plain paper, news paper, paint, paint brush, scissors, white glue, tape, masking tape, markers, colored pencils, or crayons, pencil, etc.
  • Envelope 
  • Index cards


Label each index card with what you want to know about reindeer.

Here are some suggestions:

  • Food
  • Habitat
  • Interesting facts
  • Where they can be found in the world
  • Anatomy
  • Predators
  • Habits
  • Caribou and people

As you learn about caribou, write or draw interesting facts on index cards.

What to do:

Once you have your information, create a 3 dimensional scene (real or fantasy) based on those interesting facts about caribous. Use a recycled box, craft supplies and your own imagination to depict your new-found knowledge.

Here are some suggestions:

  • Use the inside, outside or top of your box to create your scene.
  • Make your scene vertical or horizontal.
  • Make your diorama simple or detailed.
  • Use a variety of mediums to create your 3-D props.
  • Create a background for your scene.
  • Use items from around your house such as toys for props.
  • Use items you find outside for your diorama – sticks, rocks, dry grass, etc.
  • Make a mountain, river, and/or tundra scene.
  • Make a winter or summer scene.
  • Make a caribou scene that is whimsical or serious 
  • Depict caribou pulling a sleigh, eating, drinking, migrating, or fighting.
  • Make a mother and baby caribou
  • Make domesticated or wild caribou

When your diorama is complete, tape or glue an envelope behind or under it so you can store your index cards and any other information you would like to keep for future reference.

Question of the day:

Where can caribou be found in the world?

Learn more:

Enchanted Learning: Reindeer

Printable information about anatomy and behavior

Sheppard Software: Caribou

Learn about appearance, characteristics, and behavior of caribou

Reindeer Theme

Printable reindeer activities including: paper, coloring pages, and cards. Plus, reindeer related games and recipes

Reindeer Walking Around Town

Watch reindeer as they walk around a Finland and Norway

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Popcorn Project

Popcorn is a fun food with a long history!

Here are some of the things we’ve done and resources we’ve used to learn about popcorn. If you like creating your own learning adventures as much as we do, you may find the following information helpful.

  • Find out how and where popcorn is grown and what type of corn used to make it.
  • *Watch a video about the history of popcorn.
  • Germinate popcorn seeds on a moist paper towel, inside a zip top bag. Grow your own popcorn plant.
  • *Watch a video of how popcorn is made.
  • Compare the volume of unpopped to popped popcorn.
  • Use your senses to learn more about popcorn and enjoy it a few different ways.
  • Tell popcorn related jokes and riddles.
*Note: Check the video section at the end of this post for a resource.

The following activities will require: 1 lb of popping corn, an ounce scale, 1 or more methods of popping corn kernels, a stopwatch, a way to record results (optional), measuring cups and spoons, bowls, cinnamon, milk, sugar or honey, spoon, nutritional yeast, olive oil, sea salt, an oil that can withstand high heat, extra virgin coconut oil, olive oil, herbs and spices of choice, and melted butter

Measurements & Volume

Measure out a tablespoon of unpopped popcorn and weigh it. Pop the kernels in a hot air popper, microwave, or in a covered pot with 1 tablespoon of a high temperature oil until the kernels stop popping.
Time the results with a stopwatch. We used two cooking methods and decided to find out which method popped first and fastest.
Weigh the popcorn to see if anything changed and talk about the results. Measure the fluffy kernels in a measuring cup to find out how much a small amount of unpopped kernels make.
Record your findings: In writing, as a drawing or on an audio/video device.
Note: We used: A hot air popper and the stove top method. We compared the results of both methods and talked about them. We had two clear containers and added one type of popped corn to each one to do a side by side comparison of the volume difference.
We used both methods for the following activities as well.

Sensory Learning

Popcorn is a very interactive food because it starts out so small and puffs up into something so much larger. Being aware of the the popping process by watching, listening and smelling gave us a lot of great information.
Our methods of cooking gave us different information too.
 The hot air popper is quick and easy and delivers virtually flawless popcorn, but the unit gets really hot so caution is advised when using this method.
The stove-top method requires a lot more responsibility because you don’t want to burn yourself or the popcorn. Although, burnt popcorn comes with it’s own messy lesson too!
Watching, hearing and smelling the popcorn allowed us to hone our senses and the end results made a tasty treat. We compared how they both tasted and talked about that as well.
Once our popcorn was finished, we ate the fluffy kernels a few different ways

As A Cereal

Did you know that people once ate stale popcorn for breakfast?
We put some popcorn into a bowl with a little sugar or honey, a sprinkle of cinnamon and a little milk and gave it try.
Nutritional Yeast
Nutritional yeast is high in B vitamins and can be used as a topping for popcorn. It reminds me of Parmesan cheese. We spray our popcorn with extra virgin olive oil, add a little salt and nutritional yeast and mix to cover the kernels. This can be done in a covered container.
Cinnamon and Sugar
Cook popcorn in extra virgin coconut oil, and while it is hot, sprinkle it with a little cinnamon and powdered sugar and toss. A little melted butter can be drizzled on as well.
Herbs and Spices

Spray popcorn with a little olive oil, or a drizzle of melted butter, and add some of your favorite herbs and spices. Here are some of the things we use: Parmesan cheese, nutritional yeast, oregano, thyme, basil, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne pepper, black pepper, cumin, salt, etc..

We ended our project with a movie, but if you would like to do more, the following resources have been provided.


The history of popcorn, educational resources,
the science of popcorn, recipes and more.


Recipe for a popcorn cake.

Martha Stewart: Crunchy Caramel Corn

Joy of Baking: Caramel Corn Recipe with Video

Lesson Plans & Unit Studies

Grades 1-4 Unit study
This site offers activity suggestions and many other links to other popcorn related information and activities. Recipes, coloring pages, lesson plans, and more.
Homeschool Share: Popcorn At The Palace

Popcorn information and activities that reach across the curriculum.

Popcorn Science

How Stuff Works: Popcorn Plants
Grow a plant from popcorn kernels.
Free Kid Crafts: Indian Popcorn
Learn how you can make popcorn on the cob!
Scroll down to the second to last activity.

Crafts & Activities

Enchanted Learning: 
DLTK: Pop-Corn

A poem by Evaleen Stein


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