Lakes and Ponds: Plants

Contributor: Samantha Penna. Lesson ID: 11446

When you plant plants, don't you usually plant them in soil? Do you know there are plants that live in the water? There are some that just kind of float around, too. Do some research, draw, and learn!

categories

Earth Science, World

subject
Science
learning style
Visual
personality style
Lion
Grade Level
Intermediate (3-5)
Lesson Type
Quick Query

Lesson Plan - Get It!

Audio:

Have you ever seen plants growing in water? Does that seem strange? Share your story with your parent or teacher.

lake reeds

Lakes and ponds are found all over the world.

  • Did you know freshwater lakes and ponds cover one-fifth of the earth's surface?

Tell your parent or teacher about a time you saw a lake or a pond.

  • What plants did you see living there?
  • What did you notice about the lake or pond?

water plants

In the previous Related Lesson, found in the right-hand sidebar, you learned about the difference between a lake and a pond, and about the four zones.

You will need a pencil and paper for this part of the lesson. For the remainder of this lesson, you will be creating an outline. When creating an outline, you start with a topic, break that topic into smaller topics, and add details.

Outlines are short. This means you do not have to write complete sentences! Make sure you keep your outline, because you will need it for the next lesson! Copy the example of the outline below that reviews what you have learned so far about lakes and ponds:

  1. Lakes
    1. large body of water
    2. types of water in lakes
      1. fresh water (common)
      2. salt water (less common)
    3. water sources
      1. glaciers
      2. streams
      3. rivers and lakes
    4. surroundings that keep water in the lake
      1. mountains
      2. hills
      3. low inclines
  2. Ponds
    1. small body of water
    2. types of water in ponds
      1. fresh water (common)
      2. salt water (less common)
    3. water sources
      1. underground water sources, like freshwater springs
    4. surroundings that keep water in the pond
      1. mountains
      2. hills
      3. low inclines
  3. Four Zones
    1. Littoral zone
      1. gets the most light
      2. at the top of the lake or pond
    2. Limnetic zone
      1. gets some light
      2. just below the top layer of water
    3. Profundal zone
      1. gets little light
      2. towards the bottom of the water
    4. Benthic zone
      1. gets no light
      2. the bottom of the water
  • Do you understand how to create an outline?

If you need extra help, ask your parent or teacher for some assistance.

  • Did you copy the outline from above?

Great job following directions! You are ready to create your own outline. Continue to add more information to your outline as you read on.

water lillies


Lakes and ponds are home to many different kinds of plants (plants should be your fourth heading ("D") for your outline). Think about some plants you have seen in water. What did they look like? Describe the plants you have seen with your parent or teacher.

A common plant found in lakes and ponds is a water lily (this should be labeled "a." on your outline, and any details about lily pads should be labeled with "i.," "ii.," etc.). Water lilies can only grow in water that is not moving, or moving very slowly. The leaves and flowers on the water lily grow at the top of the water. Hardy water lilies are the most common type of water lily. They come in many different colors. What colors do you see below? Share your answer with your parent or teacher:

You should have added more information to your outline. Below is an example of an outline created from the paragraph above. Is yours similar?

  1. Plants
    1. water lilies
      1. grows in non-moving or slow-moving water
      2. leaves and flowers are on the surface.
      3. hardy lilies are the most common.
      4. lilies come in many different colors.

If you are having trouble creating an outline, ask your parent or teacher for help.


The next plant you will be learning about is duckweed. This heading should be labeled with "b. Duckweed." Once you have started your next heading, read on.

Duckweed is another common plant found in lakes and ponds. This plant is a free-floating plant. This means the plant is floating at the surface of the water and is not attached to anything. Its roots simply hang in the water beneath the plant. Duckweed spreads quickly and covers the surface of lakes and ponds. Check out the duckweed below. What is it shaped like? Share your answer with your parent or teacher:


Another plant that is frequently found in lakes and ponds is a cattail. The average size of a cattail is three feet tall, but some cattails can grow as large as ten feet tall! They have long green leaves and brown flower spikes at the top. If you look at the cattail below, you will notice it almost looks like it has a hot dog on its stem! Cattails are a great food source for animals living near lakes and ponds.

  • Did you add duckweed and cattails to your outline?

If not, go back to the duckweed and cattail section to finish the rest of your outline.

Once your outline is ready, ask your parent or teacher to check your work. Before moving on to the next section, tell your parent or teacher the name of a type of plant that can be found in lakes and ponds, and one interesting fact about that plant.

When you are finished sharing, move on to the Got It? section.

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