2nd Grade Pathfinder

Reference Sources for Plant Life and Growth Research

by Michaela Seeman

Scope: This research will engage students in inquiry into the topic of plant life and growth. All plants grow and develop differently, having different characteristics and needs. Growth data can be measured, analyzed, and compared.

Helpful search tips are bolded.

Iowa Core Curriculum Essential Concepts and/or Skills
Science (Life Science):
Understand and apply knowledge of the characteristics of living things and how living things are both similar to and different from each other and from non-living things.
Understand and apply knowledge of life cycles of plants and animals.
Understand and apply knowledge of the basic needs of plants and animals and how they interact with each other and their physical environment.
Literacy (Writing):
Use an effective writing process.
Engage in the information literacy process: access, evaluate, and communicate information and ideas.
Incorporate technology as a tool to enhance writing.
Math (Geometry and Measurement):
Identify attributes that are measurable, such as length, weight, time and capacity, and use these attributes to order objects and make direct comparisons.
Estimate and measure length using standard (customary and metric) and non-standard units with comprehension.
21st Century Skills (Technology Literacy):
Use technology resources to investigate given questions or problems.
Understand and practice appropriate and safe uses of technology.


YR 031 S Scholastic children’s encyclopedia. (2004). New York: Scholastic Reference.
This encyclopedia gives you general information and illustrations of plants. Look at photos and labels to learn more about plants and plant life!

World Book Kids. World Book Online, 2010. http://www.worldbookonline.com/
This link takes you to World Book Online where you can select to go to World Book Kids. From there, you can search about plants, plant life, plant growth, and more! Explore this website and learn more about plants!

YR 423 M Merriam-Webster’s primary dictionary. (2005). Springfield, MA: Merriam-Webster.
Use this friendly dictionary to look up the definition of plant, growth, life, and many other words. Explore plants through their definition!

YR 912 A Adams, S., Atkinson, M., & Phillips, S. (2003). Children’s world atlas. New York: DK.
This atlas gives you a chance to look at maps from around the world. You can look at different geographical locations and cultures, exploring how different places use plants.

http://www.tinygaleurl.com?86jvs Newsmakers. Gale. 2009.
Use this website to look up information about people involved with plants. Search terms like “plants”, “gardener”, and “farmer”.

Science Encyclopedias and Sources
Inventions and Discoveries. World Book Online. 2010. http://www.worldbookonline.com/
This website gives you information about plant life in relation to inventions and discoveries, such as the domestication of plants. Try search terms like “plant life”, “domestication of plants and animals”, or “plants and plastic” to learn more about how plants are used in our life today.

YR 577 U or http://www.gale.cengage.com/pdf/facts/GML32209_UXL_Biomes.pdf UXL Encyclopedia of Biomes.
This encyclopedia gives information about different biomes, including what plants are in each biome. Search in this encyclopedia for types of plants and what they need, sorted by biomes.

REF QL3.G7813 or http://access.gale.com/k12trial/go/?key=18875_UNI Grzimek's Animal Life Encyclopedia.
This encyclopedia has colorful pictures and illustrations including trees and other plants. Animal connections to plants can also be explored in this encyclopedia. Try searching phrases like “plants”, “plant life”, and “plant influence on animals”.

YR 578 W Wildlife and plants. (2006). New York: Marshall Cavendish.
Check out this series for more information about plants. Includes excellent pictures and maps. The “Key facts” section makes for quick information looking! Search the index for your specific topic for more information!

QK112.N53 Thieret, J. W. (2001). National Audubon Society field guide to North American wildflowers: eastern region. New York: Alfred A. Knopf.
This field guide gives more information about wildflowers specifically, including what they look like, where they grow, and what environment they need to survive.

Fiction Book
YE BAK Baker, J. (1987). Where the forest meets the sea. New York: Greenwillow Books.
This book describes the Australian rain forest. This is one example of plant life and evolution. Find other information about other plants by searching “plant life”, “plant growth”, or “evolution of plants”. For people involved in plant life, search “farmer”, “gardener”, or “environmentalist”.

Magazine Article

Scholastic News -- Edition 1, Apr2009, Vol. 65 Issue 7, Special section p1-4, 4p. (http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=prh&AN=36981823&site=srck5-live)
This magazine article tells and shows about plants and parts of plants. Other magazine articles like this can be searched for at Kid Search through EBSCO host!

Newspaper Article
. San Francisco Chronicle (10/1/2007 to present); 6/25/2008, pA1, 0p. (http://web.ebscohost.com/ehost/detail?vid=3&hid=13&sid=f97f4f0c-a085-4b97-9dd0-80b993266ee3%40sessionmgr12&bdata=JnNpdGU9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZQ%3d%3d#db=nfh&AN=32757950)
This newspaper article tells about how warming increases affects plant life in California, including a prediction for the future. Similar articles can be found through EBSCO Newspaper Source! Try search terms such as “plant life”, “plant growth”, and “farming”.

Discovery Education Streaming video: How Plants Grow. Discovery Education Streaming through Iowa AEA Online. To Discovery Education Streaming website: http://streaming.discoveryeducation.com/
This video tells about how plants grow from one little seed, answering questions about what plants need in order to grow. Other videos about plants can be searched for from this website, too! Try search terms like “plant growth”, “plant life”, and “seeds”.

http://urbanext.illinois.edu/gpe/index.html The Great Plant Escape!
Go through the mystery case and learn about plant life along the way! Learn about plant structure, plant life, life cycle, and growing plants indoors! Available in Español!

And Me! If you need help brainstorming search terms, need help finding a resource, or want to see some other examples, come as the teacher librarian!