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Corn Planting

April - June

Visit a field that farmers are plowing or harrowing with horses in preparation for planting corn...or see newly-emerged corn weeded or cultivated. (Field experience varies according to the real work being done on the farm on the day of your visit.) Learn about the seeds and tools farmers used, how soil provides the plant with its basic needs, and how weather and other conditions affect germination and growth. Hands-on activities include seed selection, soil exploration, and corn planting. After a brief visit to the circa-1900 kitchen inside the farmhouse, participants will also get to sample homemade cornbread.

Program Objectives

Students will select seeds, explore the soil, plant Howell Farm’s dent corn crop, and cook with cornmeal in order to understand:

  • That there is more to planting than putting a seed in the soil
  • How to select the best seed for planting
  • That soil is more than just dirt


Essential Questions

  • What does a plant need to grow?
  • How does the choice of seed affect the crop?
  • What is soil made of and how does it provide a plant’s basic needs?
  • Have planting methods changed over time?
  • How is dent corn used?


Relevant Curricula

Next Generation Science Standards: LS1 From Molecules to Organisms: Structures and Processes | LS2.A Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems | LS2.B Cycles of Matter and Energy Transfer in Ecosystems | LS3 Heredity, Inheritance and Variation of Traits | ETS1 Engineering, Technology, and the Application of Science

NJ Science Standards: 5.1A Understand Scientific Explanations | 5.1B Generate Scientific Evidence through Active Investigations | 5.2B Changes in Matter | 5.3 Life Science | 5.4C Properties of Earth

NJ Social Studies Standards: 6.1B Geography, People and the Environment | 6.1C Economics, Innovation and Technology | 6.1D History, Culture and Perspectives


Cost & Scheduling

– $10 per person for children ages 1+ and adults (including parents & teachers)
– Groups of 5–15 (Scholarships are available for certain programs.)


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Howell Farm is owned by the County of Mercer and operated by the Mercer County Park Commission

Brian M. Hughes, County Executive | Aaron T. Watson, Executive Director

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