Growing beans in a bag

An experiment to explore germination

Jessica Hug | April 2020

To grow beans in a bag is an experiment that helps children understand germination. It's easy to do, and the children will enjoy it.


1. Place several damp, folded paper towels into a zip lock bag. Insert five staples about halfway up the bag. This will keep the beans in the right place so that there's room to watch the roots grow.

stapling the paper bag for a bean sprouting project

3. Place a few beans into the bag.

inserting beans into a bag with a wet paper towel inside for sprouting

4. Tape the bag onto a wall or window. Add water as needed to keep the paper towel damp.

roots growing in a bag - bean sprouting project

5. Watch what happens! About three days after planting the first roots appear...

first shoots growing - bean sprouting project

A few days later: the stems start to push upward.

stems growing - bean sprouting project

After ten days the leaves begin to peek out of the seed coat.

bean sprouting project - first leaves showing

Two weeks: the first true leaves appear while the stem continues to grow and grow!

young child looking at new bean plants sprouting

How tall will they get? (Larry is sure they'll touch the ceiling!)

Projects & Activities, Science
3–5 Years, Primary School
Teacher training