The Self-Watering Terrarium

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In this biology/ecology activity, learners construct a terrarium out of a tennis ball container. This terrarium is unique because it never has to be watered. Learners will enjoy watching their seeds grow as they learn about germination, habitats, and what living things need to survive. [Activity is publicly available through a web crawler capture on]

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
1 to 4 weeks

Estimated Materials Cost:
$1 - $5 per student

Age Range:
Ages 6 - 11

Resource Types:
Activity, Experiment/Lab Activity, Lesson/Lesson Plan


Materials List (per student)

  • 1 tennis ball container with lid
  • 1/4 cup sand
  • 1 1/4 cup soil
  • 1 bean
  • grass seeds
  • water
  • warm, sunny spot


  • Engineering and Technology
    • Engineering
      • Agricultural Engineering
  • Life Sciences
    • Diversity of Life
      • Plants
    • Ecology
      • Ecosystems
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Conducting Investigations

Informal Categories

  • Gardening
  • Nature and Environment
  • Outdoor Activity


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


Components that are part of this resource:

Includes alignment to state and/or national standards:

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access


  • Mission Science Workshop


  • All rights reserved, Mission Science Workshop, 2012

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