Students learn about the small fraction of the planet available for growing food and ways this precious area can be protected. This two-part lesson is an excellent way to introduce students to the importance of preserving soil and soil’s role in feeding 7+ billion people.
In this lesson students explore weatherization (physical and chemical) by doing a series of short experiments that demonstrate how rocks and minerals are broken down into soil. Expand this lesson further by taking students on a field trip to look for rocks breaking down into soil.
This hands-on experiment demonstrates soil’s function as a water filter, as well as other physics concepts like hydrophobicity, soil absorption and adsorption, soil as a storage container for water, and the positive and negative charges of soil and contaminants.
This two part hands-on lesson teaches students what the soil is made of in their area and what a local soil profile looks like. A student reading sheet Soil Horizons & Oregon’s State Soil follows this lesson. It is an excellent tool to reinforce key concepts about soil horizons and the state soil.