Having plants in the classroom is a great way to get the students interested and involved in science.
This is a collection I set up for R-2 science classes. All tanks used are actually cheap fish tanks that I got from the local discount shop. The larger two were about $20 and the smaller one was about $7.
I purchased the stones from a local pet shop by the kilo. I chose a combination of orange and yellow stone to create the desert-type habitat. I got the mini terracotta pots from a garden shop as well as the six different cacti.
The plant in the centre in a carnivorous plant called Sarracenia (pitcher plants). I chose to buy one of those over a venus fly trap as the climate where I live is quite cold. Plus, the pitcher plants aren’t as tempermental.
The third one has a combination of a second pitcher plant, a venus fly trap and a sundew – all examples of carnivorous plants.The three cards above the tank of the wall are information sheets I created about each carnivorous plants.
The last plant is a bamboo. We were studying plants from other countries (specifically China).
Issues: I found most students were really responsive to having the plants in the classroom. The main one which posed a problem was the bamboo. It came with decorative purple stones around the base of the plants that a couple of students decided to pick them and disperse them through the room over the course of a term.
Apart from that though they provided a lot of interest and discussion.