Fast Plants investigation

Investigations with Wisconsin Fast Plants lead to powerful learning

Teaching and Learning with Fast Plants Investigations We know it is important to “help students make sense of the natural world by designing and carrying out authentic, student driven investigations (Wingert & Bell, 2015).” Compared to other living organisms, Wisconsin Fast Plants are easy to manage and very responsive to factors in their environment. In addition, many easy-to-observe Fast Plant phenotypes …

Growing Healthy Fast Plants is Fun

Three mistakes to avoid for growing healthy Fast Plants

Maybe you’ve grown Wisconsin Fast Plants before, or perhaps you’re just getting started–either way, we all want to grow strong, healthy Fast Plants. Nobody wants tall, spindly plants that need support or sickly plants that barely flower. No problem! Read on, and we’ll explain three common pitfalls to avoid when setting up growing conditions that support healthy Fast Plant growth. 1. Not …

population variation at seven days

Inheritance and Genetics: Observing Variation and Measuring Selection in Fast Plants

Variation is a fundamental attribute of life; understanding its nature is important to all. Wisconsin Fast Plants are an ideal model for teaching this concept, with easily observable variation in many plant traits. This variation can be observed, described, and measured or quantified to gain greater understanding of plant traits. Development of selection experiments allows analysis of recorded data and measuring …

genetics phenotypes inheritance

Inheritance and Genetics: Understanding Patterns of Inheritance in Fast Plants

Wisconsin Fast Plants are an ideal model organism for observing and learning about inheritance patterns! Monohybrid and Dihybrid crosses demonstrate Mendelian patterns while other genetic stocks provide opportunity for observing cytoplasmic traits and developing of selection experiments. What inheritance patterns are observable in Fast Plants? Mendelian traits: monohybrid cross this investigation focuses on the genetics of the plant stem color trait     Mendelian …

Life cycle of Wisconsin Fast Plants

Teaching the Flowering Plant Life Cycle with Wisconsin Fast Plants

Wisconsin Fast Plants are an ideal model organism for teaching and learning about the life cycle of a flowering plant. With their rapid life cycle (flowering in about fourteen days and seed maturation in about forty days), petite plant size, and simple growth requirements, it is easy to observe the different developmental stages of Fast Plants in your own classroom! How …

fast plants life science

Teaching Hands-On Life Science Using Wisconsin Fast Plants

Wisconsin Fast Plants are perfect for teaching life science in the classroom! Initially developed as a research tool at the University of Wisconsin – Madison, Fast Plants have 30+ years of use as a model organism in K-12 education. This post is an introduction to teaching with Fast Plants, with links for easy access to materials that support developing and implementing hands-on life science …

counting-hairs

Counting Leaf Hairs on Fast Plants for Selection Experiments

Hairs are not often a trait that we associate with plants. However, of all the traits that students might observe in a population of Fast Plants, we can learn a lot about variation and natural selection by counting and selecting for the number of hairs on a leaf margin. Selective breeding to increase (or decrease) hairiness can provide an excellent opportunity …

Life cycle of Wisconsin Fast Plants

Teaching with the Fast Plants life cycle

Life Cycle Investigations Life cycle investigations with Wisconsin Fast Plants® provide rich context for teaching and learning a broad range of concepts. Though some think of the plant life cycle as limited to elementary level lessons, investigations and observations made during the Fast Plants life cycle are used worldwide at middle, high school and college levels, too. Crosscutting Concepts and life cycles Try to …