Making aloe vera medicine: an activity for all ages. An herb is defined by Merriam-Webster as, “a plant or plant part valued for its medicinal, savory, or aromatic qualities”. The aloe vera plant is a succulent known for it’s medicinal and healing qualities. It is useful in treating scrapes and minor burns. In this activity, children will learn how to extract the healing gel from the aloe vera plant to use as needed.
*This activity was adapted from a blog post found on joybileefarm.com.
- aloe vera plant
- pot with drainage hole
- cactus prepared soil
- Plant an aloe vera plant indoors for easy use. Layer the bottom of the pot with rocks and fill partly with soil. Plant the aloe and cover with more soil. After planting, water thoroughly and allow it to dry out to discourage rot. Water sparingly (when the soil has dried to a depth of 1 -2 inches) and keep it in a dry and sunny spot.
- Cut off a tip of one of the leaves. The leaf will seal itself off, healing it’s own cut.
- Wash the tip and cut off any spiny edges.
- Very carefully, slice the leaf in half lengthwise, exposing the clear gel.
- Try a small amount of gel on your skin first. If you notice any swelling, itching, or a rash, discontinue use.
- Apply topically to soothe skin irritated by the sun. (Aloe vera is not advisable to ingest without advice from your physician).