Our state wildflower, Trillium

Going Native

Student activity based on the “Going Native” article from the June, July, August 2006 Our Ohio magazine.

Watch an Our Ohio television series video about native plants at the governor’s mansion on YouTube.

Academic Content Standard
(English Language Arts Grade: 7): Acquisition of Vocabulary – Students acquire vocabulary through exposure to diverse situations. Context clues, direct explanations and analysis skills are used to help aid comprehension.

(Note: Key terms used from Ohio ‘s Academic Content Standards are in bold below).

Discussion points

  1. Before reading the article, read the headings and subtitles of the article. Predict what the article is about. Discuss what you already know about landscapes, plants, gardening, and planting.
  2. Have the student read “Going Native” out loud. Stop and underline any word the student has difficulty pronouncing.
  3. Ask the student after each paragraph whether there are any words he/she does not comprehend. Circle those words.
  4. Have the student choose five underlined or circled words to understand.
  5. Use the sidebar, context clues, word relationships, roots, affixes or analogies to understand the meaning of the five chosen words.
  6. Discuss the definition of the word. Check the word in a dictionary to see how close you were with your definition.
  7. What synonym could be used for the words you chose?

Hands on at Home

  1. Choose 10 of the words circled or underlined and list them alphabetically.
  2. Next to the words, think of a similar word and write it down noting similar roots, affixes or prefixes. Does this approach help you see similarities in words?
  3. Use these words in vocabulary sentences of your own, showing their meanings.
  4. Take note of the scientific name of the plants. Do you see connections between the common name and the scientific names of the plants?


  1. Do a web search for some of the native plants. Ex. Bloodroot http://2bnthewild.com/plants/H261.htm According to your research, how did the plant get its name?
  2. Take a field trip to the noted parks and arboretums in the article. Take note of the plant names you see. From where do the names come?
  3. On an Ohio map, note the locations of all of the suggested parks / habitats. (Geography)

This student activity was prepared by Camille Kopczewski, who is coordinator of religious education at Our Lady of Perpetual Help, Grove City. She is a former sixth grade social studies teacher for South-Western City Schools. She has undergraduate and graduate degrees in education.