Soil Teacher Resources
Find Soil educational ideas and activities
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Environmental Biology - Soil Resources
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.
Painting With Soil
Students investigate the use of soil, an important natural resource in artwork. They experiment by crushing soil particles and adding the different color samples to artist acrylic to create true "earth colors". Using this paint, they create a piece of art.
Sort it Out-Natural, Capital, and Human Resources
Your class can view a slide show including photographs of various human, natural, and capital resources found in the United States. They work in groups to sort pictures into 3 categories, and then complete a related Venn diagram.
Population Vs Consumption: Which is a Bigger Problem for the Environment & Who is Getting the Lion's Share of the World's Resources?
Students develop critical thinking and awareness about the complexity of natural resource use, wealth distribution, population densities, poverty, and the environment. They think about people living in different parts of the world and about the varying effects of population vs. consumption in rich and poor countries.
School Tree Planting Project
There are so many things to learn about the environment, you can study trees, rocks, water, and soil. Budding conservationists engage in a whole group discussion on how humans use soil, rocks, and trees and how we need to replace or conserve the things we use. This extensive and well-designed lesson works through a series of active learning experiences that culminate in the planting of a tree on the school grounds. It is an excellent lesson that can be used in part, or as a whole, as it addresses many different concepts.
Growing a Lawn
Students research plant growth. In this plant growth lesson, students explore the needs of plants. Students compare and contrast grass and broadleaf plants and grow a miniature lawn in a cup of soil. Resources are provided.
Composting: A Scientific Investigation: California Academy of Sciences
Garbage, recycle, compost: Does it really matter where we put our trash once we are done? By making detailed observations over seven weeks, kids will see which materials break down naturally to become a healthy part of the soil, and which items do not decompose easily. Note: A more detailed lesson plan is available under the Download Materials section near the top of the page.
Soil: A Natural Resource
This presentation on soil shows how it is formed, what the different types of soil are, how soil is eroded, and how soil can be conserved. Fantastic photos and excellent graphics and text are found in each of the slides. The last slide is set up as a nice review of everything pupils have learned during the slide show. An excellent PowerPoint!
Renewable vs. Non-Renewable Resources
Here's a fine lesson on renewable and non-renewable sources of energy for your 5th graders. In it, learners list a number of natural resources on the board, then try to sort the resources into appropriate categories. This helps them to define and understand renewable vs, non-renewable resources. The discussion concludes with ways that the non-renewable resources can be conserved by everyone in the class.
Playing In The Dirt - Discovering Soil
Students discuss some the different types of soil in Oklahoma. They identify the soil types and explore the characteristics of each type of soil. In groups, students perform hands-on activities such as taking soil samples, classifying soil, and computing the percent of sand, silt, loam or clay in the samples.
Making a Soil Separator
Students investigate botany by creating a soil separating device. In this plant life instructional activity, students identify the needs of plants and how important the right soil is in the growing process. Students define different soil types and create a soil separator in their classroom using hammers, plywood and soil samples.
Forests/Natural Resource Management II
Students write about the importance of trees. In this natural resources lesson, students look at deforestation occurring across the globe and present what they learned to the class. As closure, all students write a poem about the importance of trees.
Apples Activity-World Resources
Students examine the importance of soil as a world resources. In this soil resources lesson, students participate in a demonstration that uses an apple to represent the portions of the world. They watch as the teacher divides the apple until there is 3% left which represents the area left to grow food. They carry out a discussion of the necessity to maintain open spaces.
Volcanic Eruption: Cause and Effect
Volcanoes are one of Earth's most destructive forces, but they also have positive effects. In an engaging lesson, young vulcanologists create an active model of a volcano, perform an experiment, read articles about the effects of eruptions, and complete a graphic organizer about cause and effect. As an extension, learners can also write a cause-and-effect paragraph. Additionally, resources are included for Spanish speaking learners. Some of the grammar in the readings is incorrect, but they are Word documents, so you can correct them if desired.
Field Trip Preparation
Students prepare for a field trip. They navigate through a Underground Network site. This "field trip" can be conducted in a patch of healthy grass or soil anywhere you can find it: right outside your building, in a backyard or at a neighborhood park.
Producers, Consumers, Decomposers (3-5)
Students gather evidence to explain that organisms in an ecosystem are tied together by their need for energy. They see that decomposers break down dead organisms and wastes and release the nutrients they contain into the soil,
Edible Soil Profile
Fourth graders explore the environment by experimenting with candy. In this soil layer instructional activity, 4th graders examine and describe the three layers of soil and factors that can degrade their quality. Students utilize cocoa puffs, marshmallows, M&M's and gummy worms to create a model of Earth's soil which they explain on a worksheet after.
Fieldwork: Horizons Under Ground: Digging Through Wetland Soil
Learners study the different soil types and describe the different soils in various environments. In this soil lesson students walk to a reserve and discuss what they saw.
What's in Wetland Soil?
Students examine the organic and inorganic components of soil. In this environmental science instructional activity, students identify the factors that influence soil formation. They collect soil samples, conduct tests, and analyze the results.
Water Cycle and Its Movement in the Soil
Students are introduced to the water cycle and water movement in soil. In this water cycle lesson, students explore how water moves through the water cycle and discuss water sources, natural reservoirs, soil infiltration rates and contaminantion. Through a teacher demonstration students observe the water infiltration rate of two different types of soil.