Shirley Hatcher - Daniel Hale Williams 

Watermelon Graphing

Shirley Hatcher Daniel Hale Williams
2710 South Dearborn
(773) 534-9226


To familiarize primary students with graphing using a bar graph. Identify
the parts of watermelon seeds and other seeds. Increase the students
vocabulary by using the proper names and common names which refer to the parts
of the seeds. To understand further the functions of parts of the seed.

Materials Needed:

Graphing paper, butcher paper, pencils, markers, index cards, and whole
watermelon and various seeds (peanuts, lima beans, broad beans, etc.)

Strategy The teacher will slice a whole watermelon. Then the teacher will divide the students into four groups. Then students will, in aggregate, eat the whole watermelon and estimate how many seeds are in the watermelon. Next the students will get into four groups and count the seeds and calculate the total number of seeds in the entire watermelon. The teacher will cut open a watermelon seed as well as other types of seeds. Other useful seeds are lima bean, peanut, and broad bean. The parts of the seed, which is an embryonic plant, will then be observed, both with the naked eye and with the aid of magnifying glasses. These parts are the hypocotyl, the embryonic stem; the epicotyl, the embryonic leaves; the radicle, the embryonic root; and the cotyledon(s), parts of the seed that serve as a food store for the germinating seed and will be the first leaves of the new plant. Performance Assessment:

The students should be evaluated on the basis of how accurately they count
seeds and complete the graph. They can also be tested on their understanding
of the parts of the seed and the function of each part.


It may also be of interest to contrast fruits that produce single seeds (like
peaches) and many seeds (like watermelons). The class can also discuss how
seeds and fruits develop from flowers.


Bauer, P.H. et al., Experiences in Biology Laidlaw Brothers Publishers,River
Forest, IL. (1981), pp. 348-352, 370-371.

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