They’re sweet. They’re chewy. They’re little nuggets of yummy fun and perfect for a quick snack. It makes sense that my kids wanted to plant raisins in our garden right? Well, when they first asked about getting a raisin plant, I was excited to tell them we already have them growing on a vine in our backyard. “What?” they both screamed with excitement mixed with doubt when they first learned that raisins start out as grapes.
So of course out to experiment we went!
Here’s how I taught them that raisins are really grapes…
Head outside and find a sunny place. Put a paper towel on top of a cooling rack and line up the grapes. It’s okay to sneak a grape or two for a snack too! It’s actually encouraged as long as you don’t eat all of them.
Make sure the grapes are spread out and not touching each other. The grapes are going to be dried and you want to make sure that there is space around each grape to maximize this process.
Once the grapes are lined up, place another paper towel on top. We had to find some small garden rocks to put on top of it so it didn’t blow away. Leave the rack of grapes outside and let them dry out. That’s all there is to it!
Each day, check the grapes to see what’s happening to them. Are they drying out? Do you see any wrinkles? What adjectives can you use to describe the process? Ours started to wrinkle up in just a couple days.
On day 5, we actually had a couple real raisins. It was really cool. The kids learned that the raisins are formed when the water inside the grape evaporates or escapes, leaving behind a shriveled piece of fruit.
We also learned a valuable lesson. During the night a critter broke through the paper towel and gobbled up most of the raisins. Try to place your grape rack out of reach of any and all nature critters. I guess they like raisins as much as we do! (Maybe put your tray inside near a window that gets lot of sunlight or take the tray in each night.)
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