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Soil Teacher Resources
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Begin with the third slide to help earth science learners investigate one of our most valuable natural resources: soil. Straightforward and fact-filled slides define soil, describe its formation and composition, and explore reclamation and conservation practices. This is most appropriate for high school or college-level geology courses when beginning a unit on soil science.
The worms crawl in, the worms crawl out, but do they care what soil is all about? Find out in an easy and fun controlled experiment. Have your young biologists hypothesize, test, and draw conclusions about which type of soil worms prefer. If you do not have access to Biochar, you could modify the materials by using different types of soil. The investigation would work well in the classroom or as a science club activity.
How many rainforests are there, where are they, and do global factors effect their locations? These are great questions that have great answers. Children in grades four through eight use several different maps to determine why rainforests occur where they do and what environmental factors cause them to grow. They examine biodiversity, soil, temperature, and precipitation maps to draw conclusions about rainforest ecosystems, then they mark all of the world's rainforests on a blank map. The lesson will lend itself well to a deep discussion on the environment, biodiversity, and habitat. Tip: This is a great research topic!
Fourth and fifth graders explore soil by taking a simulated field trip under the earth. They go to an Internet site that runs a simulation which charges them with finding a source of pollution that could destroy all of Earth's soil, and neutralizing it. This innovative, educationally rich, and exciting lesson should pique your students' interest and have them buzzing with excitement. What a great way to teach about soil and geology!
Young geographers collect samples of different kinds of soil to match to the soil terms in Barry Rudner's rhyming book Filet of Soil: dirt, mud, dust, soot, etc. They start a glossary for the project on index cards or large sheets of paper and post them in the hall for others to see! Invite a younger class to the hall to hear verbal presentations of the cards! Special treat: Follow the links to inspiring community-building activities, discussion builders.
Future energy engineers visit several stations, each one dedicated to a different alternative source of energy. They describe how solar energy is converted into other forms of energy, the patterns of distribution of energy resources in the United States, and how these patterns of distribution are represented through maps. This is a comprehensive and well-written lesson plan for your middle school science curriculum.
Students grow plants in soil representing that found in the Amazon basin. They compare results to plants growing in fertile soil and soil fertilized with leaf compost. Students chart, average and graph plant growth by height. Students compare leaf development in plants grown in different soils.
Learners model the soils layers using Oreo's. In this lesson students use their favorite food items to create a model of soil layers. A discovery lesson from a youth camp is adapted for classroom modeling and discussion of soil ecology. Teachers can customize to add depth to meet their needs.
Fourth graders observe and identify the effects of weathering and geological activities. They take part in an excellent hands-on group activity called "Erosion Race," in which each group tries to simulate erosion of soil in the quickest way possible. The teacher gives each group a sample of soil that has a different composition than the other groups. They use water to see who can move their soil down an incline the fastest.
Students explore decomposition and soil health by creating their own garden. In this agriculture lesson, students build a "lasagna garden" with organic matter found in the area and plant perennials native to their region. Students are given the responsibility of watering, mulching, and maintaining paths through the garden.
Fifth graders are introduced to the important topic of renewable, and non-renewable, resources. They are expected to be able to correctly categorize different types of resources as renewable or non-renewable. Another emphasis of this lesson is to teach the importance of conserving our non-renewable resources. An important lesson in this era of over-consumption.
This lesson is an investigation of soil properties, particularly texture, color and space for air and water. Student inspect soil samples found in their locale, perform several tests to determine different properties, and involves a field-site investigation of soil detailed in individual science journals.