My house is filled with what I fondly call “watermelon junkies.” My kids and husband, (and me, too), love watermelon! I once cut up a watermelon into cubes and told the babysitter that once my kids had finished their dinner they could “have as much watermelon as their tummies could handle.” My husband and I came home that night to find that our children had devoured about ten cups of diced watermelon. No tummy aches ensued, thank goodness. My point is…we all really, really love watermelon. So much, in fact, that an entire raised bed is devoted to growing watermelons each year.
Tracking Watermelon Growth: a Gardening and Measuring Activity For Kids
This raised bed sits in full sun on the southwest side of our house. It is only seven feet long by two and a half feet…and we have planted six watermelon plants. No, you read correctly. There are six watermelon plants in that tiny space. I know that any gardening expert and maybe even some gardening amateurs will recite a dozen or more reasons why cramming six plants into a space barely big enough for one is a really bad idea, but we simply cannot help ourselves!
My kid’s favorite part of helping me garden is growing watermelons, and second to tasting that first melon plucked from the vine in late August is sighting the very first “watermelon baby.”
This year, in anticipation of a crop of divinely sweet and juicy watermelon, I thought the kids and I would measure the growth of our watermelon throughout the season. We selected one watermelon together. One that would be easy to keep track of and not get lost in what will soon be a jungle of vines. I cut a strip of paper construction paper a half an inch thick and had William wrap it around our chosen watermelon.
I used a pen to carefully and accurately mark where the end of the construction paper met the rest of the strip. We cut off the extra so that the strip of paper now represents the circumference of the melon.
We will paste the strip onto a sheet of poster board. The plan is to measure the same watermelon each week and track its growth by using the strips of paper to make a bar graph on poster board.
We’ll post again in August when we (hopefully) will be picking our first watermelon, so you can see the results.
I’m Sarah, an educator turned stay-at-home-mama of five! I’m the owner and creator of Stay At Home Educator, a website about intentional teaching and purposeful learning in the early childhood years. I’ve taught a range of levels, from preschool to college and a little bit of everything in between. Right now my focus is teaching my children and running a preschool from my home. Credentials include: Bachelors in Art, Masters in Curriculum and Instruction.