"everyone’s favorite days have been pollination days..."

My first experience teaching with Fast Plants

Classroom teacher, Julie LaConte, tells about her first experience teaching with Fast Plants in this guest post. Thank you, Julie, for sharing your insights and experiences! Fall 2019 was my first experience teaching with Fast Plants, and plants are one of my least favorite topics to teach.  After 18 years as an upper elementary and middle school science teacher, I have had my fair share …

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 …

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 …

Fast Plants were developed through conventional breeding; they are not genetically engineered plants

Are Wisconsin Fast Plants Genetically Engineered Plants?

Simply stated, Wisconsin Fast Plants are not genetically engineered plants. Rather, Fast Plants are the result of over 30 years of ordinary plant breeding that continues, today. This plant breeding began in about 1974, using the same ways of doing things that people have used for at least 10,000 years to tame/control and improve crops for human use (p. 65). In other words, …

chemical-environment

Chemical Environment: Growing Healthy Fast Plants

Growing healthy Fast Plants is easy if you understand how the environment can affect growth and development. Three broad categories of environmental factors influence how an individual plant matures through its life cycle: 1) the physical environment, 2) the chemical environment, 3) the biological environment. This post is part of a series explaining how key chemical environmental factors can impact plants, Wisconsin Fast Plants in particular. Our website describes …

Wisconsin Fast Plants and biological environment factors that influence growth & development

Biological Environment: Growing Healthy Fast Plants

Environment plays a key role in how your Fast Plants grow and develop through their life cycle. Classifying environmental factors into three broad groups can be useful for studying their effects: 1) the physical environment, 2) the chemical environment, 3) the biological environment. This post is part of a series that explains how key environmental factors can impact plants. We focus here on biological factors and Wisconsin Fast Plants. Our website …

Physical environment factors, along with chemical and biological factors, affect Fast Plants systems and life processes

Physical Environment: Growing Healthy Fast Plants

Growing healthy Fast Plants is easy if you understand how the environment can affect growth and development. Three broad categories of environmental factors influence how an individual plant matures through its life cycle: 1) the physical environment, 2) the chemical environment, 3) the biological environment. This post is part of a series explaining how key environmental factors–physical, chemical, and biological–can impact plants, Wisconsin Fast Plants in particular. Our …

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 …