STEAM: Minot’s Plant Musicians

BY Lisa Ottaviano 

Minot Forest Elementary School (Wareham)

Project Description

Students will explore and compare plant communications using ” Music of the Plants”, an instrument that perceives the electrical impulses sent from the surface of a plant’s leaves to its root system and translates them into sound.  The impulses can be translated into 12 different instrumental programs (See video below)
Each of our 3rd and 4th grade classrooms will get to experience the unique music of a variety of different
plants/shrubs/trees. Students will witness the effects of their proximity and touch on the impulses as measured by the music emitted from the instrument. It will also be used for outdoor small group meditation circles.
Individual students needing support for emotional and behavioral regulation will be able to experience Music of the Plants on an as needed basis.  Once calmed, they can reintegrate back into their classrooms ready to learn.

How will the project be evaluated (e.g. how will you gauge its success)

Pre-assessment and post-assessment of student beliefs about the senses of the plants and how those senses manifest.

Benefit to the students and the school

The benefits are twofold:
1) When students learn firsthand that plants can communicate, and that their communication changes when they are touched or in close proximity to humans, their view of nature will be forever changed.  The hope is that the students will develop a new respect for nature and grow up to become responsible stewards of the environment.
2) Medical professionals are currently researching using Music of the Plants to shorten recovery time and aide in healing.  I expect to see similar benefits for students who struggle with regulating their emotions and behavior.

Timeline of Project (when will you do the project, if applicable)

Experimentation can begin on outdoor evergreens and indoor potted plants as soon as the instrument arrives.
Experimentation can expand in April when the school’s garden seeds have  sprouted and in May when deciduous trees leaf out.