Saturday, May 23, 2009

If All of the Raindrops

If all the raindrops
Were lemon drops and gumdrops
Oh, what a rain that would be!

I'd stand outside
With my mouth open wide
Ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah….

Can you picture it? Four-year-old Orville and three-year-old Wilbur dancing around the living room, singing this song, and sticking out their tongues in hopes of a real lemon-drop rain! If you’re a mom, you've probably witnessed it yourself. Kids love this song and the idea of candy falling from the sky, don't they?

One day while I watched them sing and dance, pretending to catch candy with their tongues, I wondered if it really would be great to have candy fall from the sky. As I imagined being pelted by rapidly falling lemon drops and having to wade through mounds of sticky gum drops, I realized that this song might be giving my kids a few wrong ideas and I had an idea for a science experiment.

We planted five seedlings in separate cups and measured each plant's height. I explained that one plant would be watered with water and the other four plants would be "watered" each day with one of the following: lemon juice, sugar water, chocolate syrup, or milk. Each plant was assigned one of the four liquids and watered only with it for the next two weeks. Each liquid represented an element of the song… lemon juice for lemon drops, sugar water for gum drops, chocolate syrup for the candy bars mentioned in the second verse, and milk for the milkshakes (also in the second verse).

On the first day, we recorded information about each plant's health and size in a journal, made a note as to which plant would receive which liquid, and stated a hypothesis. Because the boys were little, they proposed some very interesting hypotheses. There were thoughts of plants growing candy or turning sugary like a gum drop, so we read about plant growth and photosynthesis. They decided that the more sugary the liquid, the better the growth would be since the result of photosynthesis is the production of sugar.

Each day we sang the song, "watered" the flowers, drew pictures of the plants and took measurements. We recorded this information in the journal. After a couple of weeks, as you can imagine, we had to end this experiment because the results were becoming unbearable to the eyes and the nose. The plant watered with lemon juice grew a little but eventually turned brown and began to shrivel. The sugar water plant did better, but not as well as the control plant (the one watered with pure water). The milk and chocolate syrup plants were disgusting! They were shriveled, smelly, and covered in mold. YUCK!!!

The conclusion?

Plants need water… plain and simple.

The life lesson?

God is infinitely wise and a mighty Creator and He gives us exactly what we need. Instead of singing "rain, rain, go away", we should praise him for replenishing the earth. Instead of wishing for a world of lemon drops and gum drops, we should trust Him for all that we need and be content with what He supplies.

Let us take every opportunity to teach our children to praise the Lord for "he makes his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust." Matt 5:45b

1 comment:

argsmommy said...

What a great idea and a lesson they will never forget!