Project Name: Hydroponics

Grade Level: 5th Grade

Number of Students: 25

Indiana Standards project aligns with:

3-5.E.1 Identify a simple problem with the design of an object that reflects a need or a want. Include criteria for success and constraints on materials, time, or cost.

3-5.E.2 Construct and compare multiple plausible solutions to a problem based on how well each is likely to meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.

3-5.E.3 Construct and perform fair investigations in which variables are controlled and failure points are considered to identify aspects of a model or prototype that can be improved.

5.AT.5: Solve real-world problems involving addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division with decimals to hundredths, including problems that involve money in decimal notation (e.g. by using equations to represent the problem).

5.DS.1: Formulate questions that can be addressed with data and make predictions about the data. Use observations, surveys, and experiments to collect, represent, and interpret the data using tables (including frequency tables), line plots, bar graphs, and line graphs.

Recognize the differences in representing categorical and numerical data.

List of Supplies

  • Aggressively Organic Hydroponic Kits (3)

    Lesson Plan

Lesson objectives: Students will collect data while making observations of growth from plants growing in a hydroponic system.

Differentiation strategies to meet diverse learner needs: Students can research their own plants.


  • Students will start to research plants needed to make lasagna, salad and possibly salsa.


  • They will learn what allows the plant to strive and be most successful. Students will then plant the seeds and document the growth.


  • How will fresh grown produce grow vs produce in stores?

  • What is the best environment for each plant?


  • Connect to Community Garden being built in Elwood.

  • Students will compare the measurements between plants-which grow quicker/slower/etc. 

  • Students will make a salad, salsa, and lasagna as a meal with fresh produce and discuss the difference in taste from store bought items.


  • Students documentation will be evaluated. They will document the growth daily and write down their findings with mathematical evidence from their measurements.

Teacher Testimony:

As we started our own hydroponics students loved being able to be accountable for the plants! Many times students would attempt to come up with solutions to why it wasn't working. They understood that STEM is not always a success. Sometimes it is trying to find out a better way and reflection/revision with the engineering process never stops. They are excited to get this project started next year!”

Credit: Sarah Young- Elwood Intermediate School - Elwood, IN