Aquarium Terrarium

An Imagination Station Activity

Age: 8 and up
Time: 2 - 3 hours or less
Type of Activity: Science

Materials needed:

  • A small to medium size aquarium
  • Charcoal (finely ground)
  • Small pebbles
  • Perlite
  • Soil mix
  • Assorted small plants, such as ivy, mini-african violets, small herb plants, or cacti
  • Glass or plastic for top

1. Wash and dry the aquarium.
2. In thin layers, add the charcoal, pebbles, perlite, and soil.
3. Make soil deep enough to support a small plant, approximately 1 1/2 to 2 inches deep.
4. Water plants well and remove from their containers.
5. With a teaspoon, dig a small hole for the root and plant the herbs, flowers, and small plants. Do not put them too closely together.
6. Cover the aquarium with a glass plate or plastic wrap; condensation will develop.
7. At least once a day, remove lid to let area dry out a bit.
8. Place in light but not direct sun. Water only with droplets since this will be a moist environment.
9. Enjoy watching it grow.

Follow up projects:

  • Keep a log or garden journal on what does and does not grow.

  • Clip or pinch back plants as they grow to encourage fullness. Use these clippings when they are big enough and press them in a small flower press or thick phone book.

    If you have success with a small aquarium, you can experiment with a large one and really get a little forest growing -- just let your imagination bloom!


  • highlights

    Top 2015 Halloween Costumes for Kids
    Will your child transform into a dinosaur, a superhero, or the latest Disney princess on October 31? Take a look at 2015's hottest Halloween costumes for boys and girls of all ages!

    Find Today's Newest & Best Children's Books!
    Looking for newly released books for your child? Try our new Book Finder tool to search for new books by age, type, and theme, and create reading lists for kids!

    8 Not-Too-Spooky Halloween Activities for Kids
    Halloween can be too scary and gory for preschoolers and kids of all ages. Find non-scary Halloween activities and party ideas that make this creepy holiday more kid-friendly.

    Ready for Kindergarten?
    Try our award-winning Kindergarten Readiness app! This easy-to-use checklist comes with games and activities to help your child build essential skills for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

    stay connected

    Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

    Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

    Facebook icon Facebook icon Follow Us on Pinterest

    editor’s picks