After looking so closely at our drawings of leaves I started looking at trees not just leaves and noticed that there are lots of things that are the same and different. I noticed that there are many varieties of evergreen trees – those trees with needles on them not leaves. I looked through my tree book to get some names of evergreens and found so many varieties. Fir tree, Juniper, Arborvitae, Cedar, Tamarack, Spruce, Pine to name just a few.
I decided I better understand the word variety first. It is a word that means being different or diverse. There are lots of words with the first three letters (var) at the beginning. If we remember that var means different we can think about the meanings to all these words – vary, varied, various, variation and variety.
Now we can think more about the trees we see. There are so many different kinds (varieties) of evergreen trees. These trees are called conifers. They have needles not leaves, they stay green all year but they can be very different from each other.
In my science journal I am making a list of what I see that is the same and what is different with each tree. I am also drawing pictures of the trees and taking pictures with my camera. Later I can use my tree guide to help me name each of the trees I am looking at. I am using close observation to name the different characteristics of each tree. Things I thought about as I was looking at the trees were: What are size of the needles? Are they the same or different? What is the color of the needles (light green, dark green, gray green)? Does the tree have cones? What do they look like? What is the shape of the whole tree? ( back up and look at the tree from top to bottom- not just the needles and branches)
Now its your turn: Take a walk in the woods, your neighborhood, or a local park.
Make a chart or list in you notebook and write down the characteristics:
Tree 1 Tree 2 Tree 2
Draw pictures of the trees – a large view of the whole tree and then a detail of needles and cones. If you have a camera you can also take pictures to put in your notebook.
If you can’t get out and about or you just want some more practice – below are some close up pictures of different conifers that you can compare and contrast. List the evidence. What do you see that makes the trees the same or different? Be sure you use details. Scientist look for the details in plants and animals to help them name each living thing they are looking at. Have fun looking for different varieties and all the variations in each tree.