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    Science module.playing in the dirt Science module.playing in the dirt Document Transcript

    • Playing in the Dirt!: A Module on Soil and Rocks and their Connection to the Plant & Animal Kingdom Third GradeScience Topic: Soil and RocksAuthors: Kate Chelak, Ericca Dent, and Rob Schupbach November 6, 2011
    • Schedule Day 1: Day 2: Day 3: Day 4: Day 5: Soil Soil Soil Soil Erosion Soil Erosion Exploration Exploration Exploration Daily Question: What is soil made What are the How do What are the How can soil of? different types of earthworms help effects of weather erosion be soil? soil? on soil? prevented?Learning Outcomes: Students will learn Students will be Students will Students will Students will that soil is made of able to identify the understand the understand what determine the best worn-down rocks layers of soil. symbiotic happens to loose methods to prevent (pebbles, sand, silt, (Subsoil, humus, relationship soil on a windy day. soil erosion. and clay) and bedrock, topsoil) between decaying matter. earthworms and soil. Activities: Students will collect Students will Students will set up Students in small Students, with soil from outside of examine the layers a worm bin. groups will their wind erosion the schoolhouse. of soil in a precut construct a wind recorders, will section of soil. erosion recorder. investigate wind erosion prevention methods. Assessment Plan: Participation in Students will Student Lab jobs will Students will be classroom complete an exit participation in identified and assessed on the discussion and soil card to identify the creating the worm distributed among creative ways that collection. Students layers of soil. bin and reflecting in group members. they determine will document their science how wind erosion journal. can be prevented.
    • Day 6: Day 7: Day 8: Day 9: Day 10: Growing Properties of Breaking Growing Making Soil Crystals Rocks Rocks Crystals Daily Question: How can you grow Can you identify How do rocks Can you describe How can you crystals? rocks by their break apart? the characteristics model soil layers properties and of different with food? characteristics of crystals? how they are formed?Learning Outcomes: Students will be Students, using a Students will Students will Students will sum introduced to how rock field guide, explore the ways in examine crystals up their knowledge crystals are formed. will be able to which rocks can and their properties. gained in this unit identify three types break apart. by creating their of rocks own soil model. (metamorphic, sedimentary, and igneous). Activities: Under teacher Using hand lenses, Students will be Students will use Students will supervision, students will engaged in an hand lenses to create models of students will create examine different exploration of the investigate the soil layers using crystals using three types of rocks with school grounds and formation of chocolate pudding, different solutions. sight and touch. will participate in a crystals. Oreo cookies, and group discussion gummy worms. about the rocks they collected. Assessment Plan: Safety officers will Observations in Group discussions Students will be Accuracy and monitor cooperative science notebooks will be assessed assessed on their creativity will be groups for will be assessed. based on the discussion of the assessed in the compliance with engaging discourse various properties models made by determined rules. between students. and characteristics students. of crystal formation.
    • Overview Theme: What is soil and how does it affect the animal and plant kingdom?  Virginia Standards of Learning:3.1 The student will plan and conduct investigations in whicha) predictions and observations are made;b) objects with similar characteristics are classified into at least two sets and two subsets;c) questions are developed to formulate hypotheses;g) data are gathered, charted, and graphed (line plot, picture graph, and bar graph);j) inferences are made and conclusions are drawn; andk) natural events are sequenced chronologically.Interrelationships in Earth/Space Systems3.7 The student will investigate and understand the major components of soil, its origin, andimportance to plants and animals including humans. Key concepts includea) soil provides the support and nutrients necessary for plant growth;b) topsoil is a natural product of subsoil and bedrock;c) rock, clay, silt, sand, and humus are components of soils; andd) soil is a natural resource and should be conserved.Essential Understandings, Knowledge, and SkillsThe students should be able to • observe and recognize that soil, as a natural resource, provides the support and nutrients necessary for plant growth; • explain how soil forms over time; • analyze and describe the different components of soil, including rock fragments, clay, silt, sand, and humus; • comprehend the key terminology related to soil, including humus, nutrients, topsoil, and bedrock; • interpret and illustrate a basic diagram showing major soil layers, including bedrock, subsoil, and topsoil; • design an investigation to compare how different types of soil affect plant growth. This includes organizing data in tables and constructing simple graphs; • collect, chart, and analyze data on soil conservation on the school grounds; • evaluate the importance of soil to people; • describe how soil can be conserved.  National Science Education Standards
    • Content Standard A:As a result of their activities in grades K-4, all students should develop • Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry • Understanding about scientific inquiryContent Standard D:As a result of their activities in grades K-4, all students should develop an understanding of • Properties of earth materials • Objects in the sky • Changes in earth and skyContent Standard F:As a result of their activities in grades K-4, all students should develop understanding of • Personal health • Characteristics and changes in population • Types of resources • Changes in environments • Science and technology in local challengesTeaching Standard B:Teachers of science guide and facilitate learning. In doing this, teachers • Focus and support inquiries while interacting with students. • Orchestrate discourse among students about scientific ideas. • Challenge students to accept and share responsibility for their own learning. • Recognize and respond to student diversity and encourage all students to participate fully in science learning. • Encourage and model the skills of scientific inquiry, as well as the curiosity, openness to new ideas and data, and skepticism that characterize science.Teaching Standard C:Teachers of science engage in ongoing assessment of their teaching and of student learning. Indoing this, teachers • Use multiple methods and systematically gather data about student understanding and ability. • Analyze assessment data to guide teaching. • Guide students in self-assessment. • Use student data, observations of teaching, and interactions with colleagues to reflect on and improve teaching practice. • Use student data, observations of teaching, and interactions with colleagues to report student achievement and opportunities to learn to students, teachers, parents, policy makers, and the general public.Teaching Standard D:Teachers of science design and manage learning environments that provide students with thetime, space, and resources needed for learning science. In doing this, teachers
    • • Structure the time available so that students are able to engage in extended investigations. • Create a setting for student work that is flexible and supportive of science inquiry. • Ensure a safe working environment. • Make the available science tools, materials, media, and technological resources accessible to students. • Identify and use resources outside the school. • Engage students in designing the learning environment.Teaching Standard E:Teachers of science develop communities of science learners that reflect the intellectual rigor ofscientific inquiry and the attitudes and social values conducive to science learning. In doing this,teachers • Display and demand respect for the diverse ideas, skills, and experiences of all students. • Enable students to have a significant voice in decisions about the content and context of their work and require students to take responsibility for the learning of all members of the community. • Nurture collaboration among students. • Structure and facilitate ongoing formal and informal discussion based on a shared understanding of rules of scientific discourse. • Model and emphasize the skills, attitudes, and values of scientific inquiry.  Description of Students This unit is designed for a 3rd grade class of 24 students at Matoaka Elementary School inWilliamsburg, Va. The students range in age from 8 to 9. Demographically, there are threeminority students in the class. There are two students who will need assistance with writing intheir science journal and completing science worksheets. During the science period, the SpecialEducation teacher comes to aid the students with these activities.  ConnectivityDay-to-day: The first week of the unit focuses on the make-up of soil and soil erosion. Thelessons for days 1-3 explore the components of soil, the layers of soil, and how earthworms helpthe soil. Students are first introduced to what soil is and how it is important before the impact ofsoil erosion can be understood. Soil erosion is then explored in days 4-5. These three lessonsconnect to lessons for days 4-5. The second week of the unit focuses on rocks (which is acomposition of soil). Days 7-8 focus on the properties of rocks and how rocks become part of thesoil. These two lessons connect to days 1-3 when students learn the components of soil. Day 10connects to days 1-9 by allowing students to demonstrate the knowledge they gained over thetwo weeks.Connection to Students: Students are surrounded by soil, and it is important for students to lookat soil as more than just dirt. Students will see the importance of objects in their environment that
    • may are usually overlooked (soil, earthworms and rocks). Most students have had experiencesplaying in soil or with rocks and the opportunity to work with soil and rocks in the classroomwill motivate students. Also having the opportunity to grow crystals and create an edible modelsoil model will interest students.  Nature of Science and Inquiry-based activities The nature of science is addressed in our lessons on days one, two, four, five, seven, and ten.On Day 1 the students are introduced to a different method of science (observation) than istypically thought of, use empirical evidence in their observations (using hand lenses to determinethe composition of soil), and base their conclusions on evidence (see what the soil looks like todetermine what it is made up of). On Day 2 the nature of science is addressed through the use ofempirical evidence (identifying the layers of soil using sight) and by using another method(geologists stratify soil to gather information). The nature of science is addressed on Day 4through observation and inference. On Days 5 and 10, the nature of science is seen in thecreative aspect of the lessons. The nature of science on Day 7 revolves around the use of handlenses to identify rocks (empirical evidence). All of our lessons are inquiry-based and all of them are hands-on activities. Days 1 through 9(90%) are authentic as well. Day 10 is the only lesson that is not authentic because food(pudding, Oreo cookies, gummy worms, etc.) is used to model soil layers. All of the otherlessons use real science/natural materials to encourage students to explore and think about soil.  Technology and SafetyTechnology will be utilized throughout the module. Access to a computer, projector, anddocument camera is required for the lessons plans, particularly for Lesson 4 when teacher-tube isaccessed. Most of the lessons are hands-on, authentic activities not requiring the use oftechnology.Safety will be monitored both by instructor and by students. Each cooperative group will haveone student as the Care and Safety Officer for every day of the unit. When necessary, eachstation will be equipped with a bottle of hand sanitizer, paper towels, newspapers, and an extraset of goggles. When working outside, as occurs in lessons 1 and 8, students will treat theoutdoors as a classroom, following the outdoor classroom rules (stay together, listen to eachother, and respect plants and animals).
    • Daily Lesson PlansLesson Plan Days #1-3: Soil ExplorationTopic: Investigating Soil Day: 1-3NSES: Content Standards A, D, F; Teaching Standards B, C, D, E Grade level: 3rdSOL:3.1 The student will plan and conduct investigations in which a) predictions and observations are made; b) objects with similar characteristics are classified into at least two sets and two subsets; c) questions are developed to formulate hypotheses; g) data are gathered, charted, and graphed (line plot, picture graph, and bar graph); j) inferences are made and conclusions are drawn; and k) natural events are sequenced chronologically.3.7 The student will investigate and understand the major components of soil, its origin, and importance to plants and animals including humans. Key concepts include a) soil provides the support and nutrients necessary for plant growth; b) topsoil is a natural product of subsoil and bedrock; c) rock, clay, silt, sand, and humus are components of soils; and d) soil is a natural resource and should be conserved. Subject: Interrelationships in Earth/Space SystemsDaily Question: What is soil?What are the different types of soil? Procedures for Learning Experience Guiding Questions Materials Evaluation Approximate Needed (Assessment) Time NeededEngagement: Gather the students’ attention What is soil? Observation of 5 min.and explain that today you are going to be discussiontalking about soil. Ask them ―what is soil?‖ What can you find in soil? participation (seeand ―what can you find in soil?‖ After rubric)fielding a few answers, explain to the
    • students that today we are going to find outwhat soil is made up of. (If someone givesthe ―correct‖ answer – that soil is composedof worn-down rocks and decaying plants andanimals – then say something along the linesof ―Interesting idea. Let’s test it out.‖)Exploration: Explain that today they will be 3 plastic Observation of soil 20 min.taking samples of soil from around the containers for activity (see rubric)school and then examining the soil to see each pairwhat soil is made up of. Students will bepaired for this activity. After pairing off the 3 spoons forstudents, give each pair the position cards each pairand explain that they will need to decide whois the Communications Specialist science(responsible for recording observations and journalsreporting them) and who is the Investigator(responsible for collecting the soil samples).Both students are responsible for examiningthe soil samples. Once they have done this,remind the students that the outdoorsclassroom has the same rules as the indoorclassroom. Tell them that they will be goingto three different sites, and that at each sitethey will collect a small soil sample and putit in their cups. Tell them to use a spoon tocollect the sample, and to use a differentspoon for each sample to avoidcontamination. Then have the pairs gathertheir supplies for collecting (three clear
    • plastic containers and three spoons), and gooutside to the first location. Collect samplesfrom all three locations, having theCommunications Specialist recordobservations of the site while the Investigatorcollects the soil sample. Then return inside.Tell the students to examine each of thesamples carefully, and to record what theysee in the soil. Walk around the roomobserving and assisting as necessary.Explanation: Once all the students have What did you find in the Observation of 10 min.examined their soil samples and recorded soil samples? discussiontheir observations, gather their attention participation (seeagain. Ask them what they observed. What Was it what you expected? rubric)was in the soil samples? Was it what youexpected What does this tell you about what What does this tell youis in soil? Allow the students to lead the about what is in soil?discussion. Direct the discussion toward thecommon features the students found in eachsample. Make a chart listing those commonfeatures. Explain the main components ofsoil: worn-down rocks and decaying plantsand animals. Tell the students that a lot of theother things they saw in the soil help the soilto be nutritious for plants (see ―notes‖ formore information).
    • Extension: Ask the students ―Are the Are the different soil Observation of 5 min.different soil samples the same? What makes samples the same? discussionthem different? What do you think this tells participation (seeyou about soil?‖ Make a chart listing those What makes them rubric)differences, and explain that there are three different?types of soil: sand, silt, and clay. Thedifferences are based on how fine the What do you think this tellsparticles are ground up (sand having the you about soil?largest particles and clay the finest).Notes: Soil makes up the outermost layer of our planet. Topsoil is the most productive soil layer. Soil has varying amounts of organicmatter (living and dead organisms), minerals, and nutrients. Five tons of topsoil spread over an acre is only as thick as a dime. Naturalprocesses can take more than 500 years to form one inch of topsoil. Soil scientists have identified over 70,000 kinds of soil in theUnited States. Soil is formed from rocks and decaying plants and animals. An average soil sample is 45 percent minerals, 25 percentwater, 25 percent air, and five percent organic matter. Different-sized mineral particles, such as sand, silt, and clay, give soil itstexture. Fungi and bacteria help break down organic matter in the soil. Plant roots and lichens break up rocks which become part ofnew soil. Roots loosen the soil, allowing oxygen to penetrate. This benefits animals living in the soil. Roots hold soil together and helpprevent erosion. Five to 10 tons of animal life can live in an acre of soil. Earthworms digest organic matter, recycle nutrients, andmake the surface soil richer. Mice take seeds and other plant materials into underground burrows, where this material eventuallydecays and becomes part of the soil. Mice, moles, and shrews dig burrows which help aerate the soil.Sources: http://www.epa.gov/gmpo/edresources/soil.htmhttp://www.math.louisville.edu/gems/LessonPlans/SoilLessonPlan.pdf
    • Soil Exploration: Layers of SoilName: _______________________Date:_________________ Label the soil layers in the diagram, using the following terms: subsoil humus bedrock topsoil
    • Lesson Plan Days #1-3: Soil ExplorationTopic: Soil Exploration Day: 3NSES: Content Standards A, D, F; Teaching Standards B, C, D, E Grade level: 3rdSOL:3.1 The student will plan and conduct investigations in which a) predictions and observations are made; b) objects with similar characteristics are classified into at least two sets and two subsets; c) questions are developed to formulate hypotheses; g) data are gathered, charted, and graphed (line plot, picture graph, and bar graph); j) inferences are made and conclusions are drawn; and k) natural events are sequenced chronologically.3.7 The student will investigate and understand the major components of soil, its origin, and importance to plants and animals including humans. Key concepts include a) soil provides the support and nutrients necessary for plant growth; b) topsoil is a natural product of subsoil and bedrock; c) rock, clay, silt, sand, and humus are components of soils; and d) soil is a natural resource and should be conserved. Subject: Interrelationships in Earth/Space SystemsDaily Question: How do earthworms help soil? Procedures for Learning Experience Guiding Questions Materials Evaluation Approximate Needed (Assessment) Time NeededEngagement: Gather the students’ attention and What are Observation of 5 min.explain that today you are going to be talking earthworms? discussionabout earthworms. Ask them ―what are participation (seeearthworms?‖ and ―how do earthworms help How do earthworms rubric)soil?‖ and ―what does composting mean?‖ After help soil?fielding a few answers, explain to the studentsthat today we are going to make a worm bin and What does
    • that by observing the worm bin every day for a “composting” mean?few weeks we will find out more aboutearthworms. (If someone gives the ―correct‖answer – that earthworms help aerate soil andproduce good fertilizer by eating soil – then saysomething along the lines of ―Interesting idea.Let’s make a worm bin to test out yourhypothesis.‖)Exploration: Explain that today each group 1 large plastic Observation of 15 min.will be making a worm bin. (Students will be tub (5+ gallons) penny experimentgrouped into fours.) Give each group the with lid per (see rubric)position cards and explain that each group will groupneed to pick a Communications Specialist(responsible for recording observations and shreddedreporting them), a Materials Manager newspaper(responsible for gathering the needed supplies),a Safety Officer (responsible for making sure tub of redeveryone is being safe), and a Principal wigglersInvestigator (responsible for relayinginstructions from the teacher, helping 1 cup of soil perteammates when needed, and making sure groupeveryone knows what to do and isparticipating). Once they have done this, call the ½ cup sand perPrinciple Investigators (PIs) up and give them groupthe list of materials for the materials manager.Also tell them that their first direction is to tear vegetables/otherthe newspaper into strips (show them an organic itemsexample), and to come back to you when they (worm food)are done. Walk around the room observing and
    • assisting. When the PIs start to come back toyou, tell them to fill half of the container withshredded newspaper and to put a tablespoon ofsoil and a half-cup of sand in as well. Tell themto come back to you when they have finished.Walk around the room observing and assisting.When the PIs come back to you, tell them tomix everything up and then to bury the wormfood half way into the newspaper. Tell them tochoose some of the ―random objects‖ they havein their collection and to put those in the wormbin. Tell them to come back to you whenthey’re done. Walk around the room observingand assisting. When the PIs come back to youtell them to put the worms in the container andto observe/take notes on what they see.Explanation: Once all the students have had a What did the worms Observation of 10 min.chance to observe their worm bins for five do? discussionminutes, gather their attention again. Ask them participation (seewhat they observed. What did the worms do? What do you think is rubric)What do you think is going to happen to the going to happen tonewspaper? The worm wood? The worms? The the newspaper? Theplastic caps/pieces of wood/peanuts in the shell? worm wood? TheAllow the students to lead the discussion. Direct worms? The plasticthe discussion toward how the students think caps/pieces ofearthworms might help the soil that they have wood/peanuts in theput in the containers. Then explain to the shell?students that over the next two weeks they willbe observing the worms and what happens to
    • them.Extension: Have the students observe their What changes do they worm bins Observation of 10 min.worm bins for a few minutes at the start of notice over time? projectevery science class. Then lead them in a participation anddiscussion about what they have observed. How long does it take discussion the worms to participation (see consume the food you rubric) give them? Are there certain foods they seem to prefer over others? Is there anything the worms wont eat (plastic caps, wood, peanut in the shell)?Notes: Earthworms dig large burrows which let water and air into the soil. This helps stop erosion and lets the water and air get downto the roots of plants. The burrows also helps plant roots to move more easily through the soil and into new spaces. Worms drag leavesand plant bits down into the earth. As they burrow, the worms swallow soil and eat the plant matter that is in it. The soil they swallowpasses though the worms body and is left in little piles on top of the ground. This is called castings and is excellent fertilizer (food forplants). People who farm worms do it to collect the castings to sell to gardeners.
    • Sources: http://archive.fieldmuseum.org/undergroundadventure/teachers/worm_bins.shtml
    • Rubric: Soil Exploration—How do earthworms help soil? Discussion Participation Participation in Worm Bin Scientific Concepts and Creation Related Content Displays little to no Makes little to no effort to No use, or mostly inappropriate understanding of earthworms complete tasks for the worm bin. use, of scientific terminology. and composting during Occasionally or never follows No mention or inappropriate discussion. directions. references to the relevant Does not volunteer information Cannot state what the worm bin scientific concepts, principles, or Novice on earthworms and composting taught him/her about earthworms theories (big ideas) of earthworms during discussion. and composting when asked. and composting. Listens infrequently when Some evidence of understanding others are talking during observable characteristics and discussion. properties of earthworms and composting. Displays a fractured Makes an effort to complete tasks Used some relevant scientific understanding of earthworms for the worm bin. terminology. and composting during Follows directions for the worm Minimal reference to relevant discussion, but also displays a bin. scientific concepts, principles, or willingness to learn. Can vaguely state what the worm theories (big ideas) of earthworms Apprentice Volunteers information on bin taught him/her about and composting. earthworms and composting earthworms and composting when Evidence of understanding during discussion. asked. observable characteristics and Mostly listens when others are properties of earthworms and talking during discussion. composting. Displays an understanding of Makes a determined effort to Appropriately used scientific earthworms and composting complete tasks for the worm bin. terminology. during discussion. Follows directions for the worm Provided evidence ofPractitioner Volunteers astute and relevant bin. understanding of relevant information on earthworms and Can clearly state what the worm scientific concepts, principles or composting during discussion. bin taught him/her about theories (big ideas) of earthworms
    • Listens attentively when others earthworms and composting when and composting. are talking during discussion. asked. Evidence of understanding observable characteristics and properties of earthworms and composting. Displays an excellent Makes a clear and determined Precisely and appropriately used understanding of earthworms effort to complete tasks for the scientific terminology. and composting during worm bin. Provided evidence of in depth, discussion. Follows directions for the worm sophisticated understanding of Volunteers astute, relevant, and bin. relevant scientific concepts, novel information on Volunteers and can clearly state principles or theories (big ideas) earthworms and composting what the worm bin taught him/her of earthworms and composting.Expert during discussion. about earthworms and Revised prior misconceptions Listens attentively when others composting. when appropriate. are talking during discussion Observable characteristics and and then responds to what they properties of earthworms and said. composting went beyond the task/investigation to make other connections or extend thinking.
    • Lesson Plan Day #4-5: Soil Erosion Topic: Soil Erosion Day: 4-5 NSES: Content Standards A, D, F; Teaching Standards B, C, D, E Grade level: 3rd SOL: 3.1 The student will plan and conduct investigations in which a) predictions and observations are made; b) objects with similar characteristics are classified into at least two sets and two subsets; c) questions are developed to formulate hypotheses; g) data are gathered, charted, and graphed (line plot, picture graph, and bar graph); j) inferences are made and conclusions are drawn; and k) natural events are sequenced chronologically. 3.7 The student will investigate and understand the major components of soil, its origin, and importance to plants and animals including humans. Key concepts include a) soil provides the support and nutrients necessary for plant growth; b) topsoil is a natural product of subsoil and bedrock; c) rock, clay, silt, sand, and humus are components of soils; and d) soil is a natural resource and should be conserved. Subject: Interrelationships in Earth/Space Systems Daily Question: What are the effects of weather on soil? Procedures for Learning Experience Guiding Questions Materials Needed Evaluation Approxi (Assessment) mate Time NeededEngagement: Begin with the video ―Wind Why do you think the soil was ―Water Erosion and the The teacher will 7 minutesErosion and the American Dustbowl‖ (2:44- able to move around like that? American Dustbowl‖ walk around and5:00). Have students watch the video, and Do you think the farmers http://www.teachertube listen to thethen discuss in groups of four what they thought this would happen? .com/viewVideo.php?v groupobserved in the video and how it applies to What effects did this have on ideo_id=147083&title= discussionsus today. people? Animals? Wind_Erosion_and_the making note if _American_Dustbowl the students are
    • on task, and the ideas that are formulated.Exploration:The teacher will explain to the What were the effects of wind Wind erosion recorder The teacher will 25students that they will be simulating (on a on the soil/sand? What effect materials: Shoeboxes walk around to minutessmaller scale) what they observed in the did the “trees” and rocks have with lids, clay, popsicle see if studentsvideo. Students will be placed in groups of on this process? If you wanted sticks, sand, dry soil, have createdfour. Each group will be given wind erosion to prevent erosion, what could rocks, tape, straws (for their windrecorder materials. Have students poke a you do? Discuss your ideas with each student). erosion recorder.pole in one short side of their shoebox. Have your group. Make a prediction The teacher willstudents push each popsicle stick in a ball of for what will happen if there Observation sheet, listen to theclay to stand up at the bottom of their are no trees/rocks? Is the effect markers, pencils, ruler groupshoebox. Place a thin layer of sand and soil better or worse? discussion, andat the bottom of the shoebox. Scatter rocks at will later collectthe bottom as well. Have students mark on the observationeach craft stick the level of the sand or soil. sheets forNow have students draw a picture of how summativetheir diagram looks. Have students place the assessment.lid on top of their shoebox and tape it closed.Have students take turns blowing oncethrough the hole with their straw (remindstudents not to shake the box). After eachround of students, have them mark where thesand or soil is on the stick in different colors.After they have made their observations,have students repeat the activity withoutrocks and trees. Record observations.
    • Explanation: Soil erosion occurs when the How do you think water erosion Observation sheet The teacher will 10upper part of the soil cover is washed or is similar to or different than listen to minutesblown away by rain and wind. Soil erosion is wind erosion? Record your students’a problem in almost every county. There is thoughts. Is soil a natural responses.evidence that human activity is accelerating resource? What are ways thethe erosion of the Earth’s soil. Soil erosion is soil erodes naturally, and howan important environmental issue because do humans accelerate thishumans depend on the soil for food, forestry, process? Who/what depends onand wildlife. the soil, and in what way?Extension: Have students use their erosion Besides natural objects (trees Pebbles, small sticks, The teacher will 20diagram to come up with ways to prevent and rocks) are there other gravel, mud, clay, and listen to group minuteserosion. Have students create a sand hill, and things that can be used to water. discussions andrepeat the above activity. Then have students prevent wind erosion? Why do make note of theuse additional materials to see if they can you think trees can help prevent objects beingslow down erosion. wind erosion? Do any of the used by each objects provided slow erosion? group. If so, which objects work best/least? Discuss with your group. Record observation. Notes: Soil-Net (2010). Soil erosion. Retrieved from http://www.soil-net.com/dev/page.cfm?pageid=secondary_threats_erosion GK-12 Fellows Program (2010). Wind erosion and how we can prevent it. Retrieved from http://gk- 12.osu.edu/Lessons/4th%20Grade/Wind%20Erosion%204.pdf Teacher Tube (2010). Wind erosion and the American dustbowl. Retrieved from http://www.teachertube.com/viewVideo.php?video_id=147083&title=Wind_Erosion_and_the_American_Dustbowl California Science Center (2011). Post visit activity: Wind erosion. Retrieved from http://www.californiasciencecenter.org/Education/GroupPrograms/BigLab/Erosion/docs/ ErosionPost.pdf
    • Soil ErosionRecord the level of sand or soil in your wind erosion recorder._____________centimeters Draw a picture of your wind erosion recorder.Record the level of sand or soil in your wind erosion recorder after the first round.______________centimetersRecord the level of sand or soil in your wind erosion recorder after the secondround.______________centimetersRecord the level of sand or soil in your wind erosion recorder without trees orrocks after round one.______________centimetersRecord the level of sand or soil in your wind erosion recorder without trees orrocks after round two.______________centimeters
    • What do you notice?________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
    • Preventing Soil ErosionWhat are ways soil erosion can be prevented?__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________Why do you think these ways will prevent soil erosion?____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Using the given materials, test your methods.Were you able to help prevent or slow down soil erosion with your method? Whydo you think this method worked or did not work?__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
    • Lesson Plan Day #6 and 9: Growing CrystalsTopic: Soil Components Day: 6 and 9NSES: Content Standards A, D, F; Teaching Standards B, C, D, E Grade level: 3rdSOL:3.1 The student will plan and conduct investigations in which a) predictions and observations are made; b) objects with similar characteristics are classified into at least two sets and two subsets; c) questions are developed to formulate hypotheses; g) data are gathered, charted, and graphed (line plot, picture graph, and bar graph); j) inferences are made and conclusions are drawn; and k) natural events are sequenced chronologically.3.7 The student will investigate and understand the major components of soil, its origin, and importance to plants and animals including humans. Key concepts include a) soil provides the support and nutrients necessary for plant growth; b) topsoil is a natural product of subsoil and bedrock; c) rock, clay, silt, sand, and humus are components of soils; and d) soil is a natural resource and should be conserved. Subject: Interrelationships in Earth/Space SystemsDaily Question: How can you grow crystals? Procedures for Learning Experience Guiding Questions Materials Evaluation Approximate Needed (Assessment) Time NeededEngagement: Remind students of the short It is interesting to see the 1 saucer with Students should be 10 minutesscience project they did on Day 6 ago. Remind crystals that make up some table salt able to correctlystudents that they were wearing safety goggles rocks. Most crystals are crystals, 1 answer that we placedwhen they stirred as much salt as would dissolve formed underground when saucer with the separate liquidsinto a half-cup of boiling hot water. Then melted minerals collect and sugar crystals, into two separatestudents added sugar into boiling hot water. grow in size as they cool. You 1 saucer with saucers. They shouldFinally we added Epsom Salts to boiling water. can learn more about Epsom salt also recall that everyAsk student what steps we did on Day 6. crystals and how they crystals. Friday we check the “grow” by making some saucers, dump off the
    • yourself. How can you grow excess water and crystals? added a string to drain off the excess water.Exploration: Have students come up to the How do the salt crystals 24 Hand lens Students should 20 minutesscience table in groups of three where the look? What is their shape record observationsthree saucers are located. Have each student and size compared to the in science notebook.make observations of the three crystal types. sugar crystals?Ask students what they think happened overthe time from Day 6. Ask students if they canthink of another solution thatExplanation: Explain to the students that How do you think cooling 10 minuetscrystals form from molten rock or may be grown of the water affects crystalfrom mineral solutions. Ask them what we have size?done in class. The size of crystals depends onhow fast the molten rock and solutions cool.Extension: Create another solution of mineral What do you think these ½ cup boiling Predictions should be 20 minuetssolution using salt. Immediately place the crystal crystals will look like water, table made about what willsolution into the refrigerator. Have students make tomorrow? Do you think salt, Pyrex happen to thepredictions in their science notebooks about what they will resemble the bowl, mini crystals. Observationsthey think will happen. Take the solution out of refrigerator will be made in crystals we looked atthe refrigerator. Let students examine and have cooperative groups of today?them discuss in cooperative groups. the characteristics of crystal formations.Notes: Crystals should NOT be eaten.http://www.geologyshop.co.uk/educat~1.htmhttp://sosclassroom.org/summersciencefair2011/grades-k-2-chemistry-growing-crystalshttp://www.lessonplanspage.com/scienceartmdchristmascrystals46-htm
    • Lesson Plan Day #7: Properties of RocksTopic: Soil Components Day: 7NSES: Content Standards A, D, F; Teaching Standards B, C, D, E Grade level: 3rdSOL:3.1 The student will plan and conduct investigations in which a) predictions and observations are made; b) objects with similar characteristics are classified into at least two sets and two subsets; c) questions are developed to formulate hypotheses; g) data are gathered, charted, and graphed (line plot, picture graph, and bar graph); j) inferences are made and conclusions are drawn; and k) natural events are sequenced chronologically.3.7 The student will investigate and understand the major components of soil, its origin, and importance to plants and animals including humans. Key concepts include a) soil provides the support and nutrients necessary for plant growth; b) topsoil is a natural product of subsoil and bedrock; c) rock, clay, silt, sand, and humus are components of soils; and d) soil is a natural resource and should be conserved. Subject: Interrelationships in Earth/Space SystemsDaily Question: Can you identify rocks by their properties and characteristics of how they are formed? Procedures for Learning Experience Guiding Questions Materials Evaluation Approximate Needed (Assessment) Time NeededEngagement: Have students cover the Have you ever heard the 24 Students will make 10 minutesdesks in newspapers. Project three types saying, “It’s as hard as a metamorphic observations of theof rocks onto the screen. Pass out three rock”? Does this mean all rocks, 24 rocks in sciencedifferent types of rocks. Have students rocks are equally hard? What sedimentary notebooks.examine them with hand lens. Ask do you think? How can you rocks, 24students if they see similarities and find out the hardness of igneousdifferences. Have students record these different rocks? What other rocks, 24
    • observations in their science notebooks. properties of rocks can you hand lens,Ask students to sketch each rock. observe and describe? newspapersExploration: Hand out rock field guide. What are some of the 24 copies of 15 minutesHave students once again make characteristics of an igneous rock fieldobservations of the rocks in front of them. rock? How are sedimentary guideTell them to use the field guide to see if rocks formed? Where could Ithey can properly identify the rocks. Havethem label them igneous, sedimentary, and find an example of ametamorphic. In their science notebooks, metamorphic rock?have them write a description of the threedifferent types of rocks and how each isformed. Project a copy of the rock cycleon the board.Explanation: Rocks are earth materials What are some of the 24 copies of 20 minutesmade up of minerals. Minerals are characteristics that can help the rock cycleelements or compounds that occur us determine the differencesnaturally in the earth’s crust. Geologists between the three types ofstudy rocks and minerals to help us learn rocks? What does each rockabout the formation of the earth. feel like?Geologists classify rocks according totheir properties or characteristics thatcan be observed (hardness, color, shape,size, luster, texture, number ofminerals). Give students a copy of theblank rock cycle worksheet.Extension: Ask students to gather in a What is happening to the 15 minutescircle in the middle of the classroom. Ask sediments right now? Whatthree students to represent igneous, are the two things that aresedimentary, and metamorphic rocks. needed to create metamorphic
    • Have students act out the rock cycle by rocks?enacting erosion, magma, heat, cooling,and pressure.Evaluation: Give students an exit card. 24 cards withEach card will have one type of rock on it. random rocksStudents can use their science notebooks on them.to help them identify the rock.Notes: Newspapers will be laid out on the students’ desks. For students with visual impairments, use the sense of touch to havethem describe what the rock feels like. Students must tie shoes before the rock cycle activity can take place.http://www.rocksforkids.com/RFK/identification.html
    • Rockin’ It! Properties of Rocks Identify this type of rock This rock is an example of________Sedimentary Metamorphic Igneous
    • Lesson Plan Day #8: Breaking RocksTopic: Soil Components Day: 8NSES: Content Standards A, D, F; Teaching Standards B, C, D, E Grade level: 3rdSOL:3.1 The student will plan and conduct investigations in which a) predictions and observations are made; b) objects with similar characteristics are classified into at least two sets and two subsets; c) questions are developed to formulate hypotheses; g) data are gathered, charted, and graphed (line plot, picture graph, and bar graph); j) inferences are made and conclusions are drawn; and k) natural events are sequenced chronologically.3.7 The student will investigate and understand the major components of soil, its origin, and importance to plants and animals including humans. Key concepts include a) soil provides the support and nutrients necessary for plant growth; b) topsoil is a natural product of subsoil and bedrock; c) rock, clay, silt, sand, and humus are components of soils; and d) soil is a natural resource and should be conserved. Subject: Interrelationships in Earth/Space SystemsDaily Question: How do rocks break apart? Procedures for Learning Experience Guiding Questions Materials Evaluation Approximate Needed (Assessment) Time NeededEngagement: The teacher will ask the How do rocks break Ice cubes and The teacher will 7 minutesstudents, ―How do rocks break apart to apart? What does the plastic eggs make note ofbecome part of the soil?‖ Write their plastic egg represent? (for each students’ ideas, and student). if students stay onresponses on the board. After students have What happened when you task.finished responding, give each student a shook the egg?plastic egg and a sugar cube. Model placingthe sugar cube (rock) inside the egg
    • (representing weathering) and shaking thecube. Have the students shake their eggs forseveral minutes. Have the students open theireggs and pour out the ―soil.‖ Lead adiscussion asking students what the plasticegg represents. After the brief discussion, theteacher will tell the students’ that they willbe learning about the effects of weather orrocks and how rocks become a part of thesoil.Exploration: The teacher will lead a field What are some ways rocks Students will Teacher will see if 20 minutesexploration for broken and weathered rocks. are broken? How can wind choose their each student hasRemind students of the rules when traveling or rain break rocks, but it own rocks chosen a rock. The is hard for us to break from outside teacher will listenoutside. Before leading students outside, them with our hands? How the school. to each group’sexplain that students will be looking for do you think your group’s discussion.rocks to bring back inside. When students rock got here?have collected their rocks, lead them backinside. Students will be given magnifyingclasses to examine their rocks. Students willthen discuss in groups how they think rocksbreak apart. Students will record theirthoughts and provide reasons for their ideas.Students will then be asked to share theirthoughts.
    • Explanation: Rocks are broken down in Can you think of any other The teacher will 10 minutesdifferent ways-by wind, rain, and rock slides. ways rocks can be broken? listen to students’Over the years, rocks are continuously responses.broken down and they become a part of thesoil.Extension: Each student group will choose Predict what will happen Plastic bottle The teacher will Over the courseone rock from their group to keep. The class to the rocks when they are for each make note if the of 3 days.will then attempt to break apart a rock. Each repeatedly frozen. Justify group, students stay on your prediction. students’ task, and will latergroup will be given a plastic bottle with Why do you think the water chosen rock, collect the students’water inside. Each group will drop their rock breaks apart the rocks freezer. observationinside. The containers will be placed in a (aren’t rocks solid)? worksheet forfreezer to be repeatedly frozen and thawed in summativean attempt to break apart the rocks. Have the assessment.students record their observations of the rockin the bottle before and after it is frozen.Have students discuss with one another abouttheir prediction, and if they found evidenceto support it.Notes:http://www.doe.virginia.gov/testing/sol/standards_docs/science/index.shtml (Engagement activity)http://www.hometrainingtools.com/rock-cycle-project/a/1349/ (Extension activity)
    • How Rocks Break Apart? Draw how your rock looks before it is frozen below.What do you think will happen to your rock after it is repeatedly frozen? Explainyour answer.______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________Draw how your rock looks after it has been frozenWas your prediction supported? Explain you answer.____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
    • Lesson Plan Day #10 : Making SoilTopic: Soil Exploration Day: 10NSES: Content Standards A, D, F; Teaching Standards B, C, D, E Grade level: 3rdSOL:3.1 The student will plan and conduct investigations in which a) predictions and observations are made; b) objects with similar characteristics are classified into at least two sets and two subsets; c) questions are developed to formulate hypotheses; g) data are gathered, charted, and graphed (line plot, picture graph, and bar graph); j) inferences are made and conclusions are drawn; and k) natural events are sequenced chronologically.3.7 The student will investigate and understand the major components of soil, its origin, and importance to plants and animals including humans. Key concepts include a) soil provides the support and nutrients necessary for plant growth; b) topsoil is a natural product of subsoil and bedrock; c) rock, clay, silt, sand, and humus are components of soils; and d) soil is a natural resource and should be conserved. Subject: Interrelationships in Earth/Space SystemsDaily Question: How can you model soil layers with food? Procedures for Learning Experience Guiding Questions Materials Needed Evaluation Approximate (Assessment) Time NeededEngagement: Ask students what kind of 5 minutesmodels they can think of. Show examples of What are somedifferent models such as solar system made different models thatout of Styrofoam balls and a volcano made you can think of?out of clay. Can you make a model using food?
    • Exploration: Give each student a plastic 35 minutescup. Have each student layer the ingredients Clear plastic cups, Studentsin the following way: Vanilla cookies (semi- ability to 1. ¼‖ layer of vanilla cookie (semi- crushed), Vanilla follow crushed for larger crumbs) directions in pudding, Graham 2. ½‖ layer of vanilla pudding constructing crackers (crushed), their own 3. ½‖ layer of graham cracker Butterscotch pudding, edible soil crumbs 4. ½‖layer of butterscotch pudding Chocolate cookies (semi- will be 5. ¼‖ layer of chocolate pudding / crushed), 1 gummy assessed. chocolate cookies mixture worm per student, 6. sprinkle of dyed coconut (enough Chocolate pudding (mix to cover top layer) with chocolate cookies 7. gummy worm (semi-crushed) Shredded coconut (dyed green)Explanation: As a class, students should Spoons 15 minutesdiscuss what each layer of food represents inreference to soil layers:• vanilla cookie (semi-crushed) = rock• vanilla pudding = sand• graham cracker crumbs = silt• butterscotch pudding = clay• chocolate pudding / chocolate cookies(semi-crushed) = topsoil with humusThere are three main types of soil—sand, siltand clay. When all three are mixed togetherthey create loam. Humus, anything in theprocess of decaying, is the organic matterfound in soil. In this activity, students will
    • layer pudding and cookies to model themajor components and layers of soil.This lesson will review the layers of soil asthey are in the ground. On the bottom isbedrock, which is the parent material for thesoil that will not be shown until erosion or anearthquake exposes it to the world.Next is subsoil, which is mostly sand/silt andclay. This is where most of the nutrients arefound and deep plant roots will come herefor water. Next is topsoil, which is whereplant roots grow and animals live. This issometimes called the organic layer wheredecomposers recycle dead plants and animalsinto the top layer. On top is humus, whichincludes more decomposing organic material.Students will enjoy their own edible soilmodels.Extension: While students are enjoying their What are the different 5 minutessoil models, lead a review discussion on the layers of soil? Why ismajor components of soil and rocks and how it important to conserve soil?they interact with the plant and animalkingdoms.Notes: Students must wash hands before beginning creating their models. Students with food allergies should be given alternativefoods. Students should also understand that NOTHING in the science laboratory should be eaten, that this experiment was with foodand thus alright to enjoy.http://www.agintheclass.org/Teachers/Documents/Dirt%20Pudding.pdf
    • Stories of Use The following are a series of email, text messages, and Twitter messages sent to our fellow colleague, Gertrude Okyere, on the execution of our lesson plans.Hey Trudy!You will not believe the day we had in science today! You knowthat we are finishing up our soil unit, right? Well, I had twoboys in my class today dare each other to eat the crystals thatwe made! Stressing the importance of NOT eating anything that wemake during labs is really not sinking in with the students.If you don’t lay the foundation for the understanding of how towork safely in the scientific laboratory now, what do you thinkit is going to be like for these kids in freshman chemistry? Itwas totally chaotic for the first half of the lesson. Althoughwe had made the solutions on the sixth day, and I had stressedthe importance wearing goggles, I still had students who wouldput the goggles on their head and not over their eyes! Havingbad vision myself, and a touch of the claustrophobia I canunderstand how goggles can be uncomfortable. The lab coats thatwe got them really seemed to motivate them!Hope you are well!Take care,RobHey Trudy!Last day of the soil module. We made models with pudding andcookies. Everything went alright at the beginning. I was quiteimpressed with how much the students remembered about the layersof soil. Then it happened! Ricky took a giant gob of chocolatepudding on his spoon and flung it at Mackenzie. The whole classwas in chaos. I had the principal investigators take charge oftheir groups, while I dismissed Mackenzie to the restroom. I hadTaylor go with her. I pulled Ricky out into the hall. I had himexplain his actions. I told him that he wasn’t making a goodchoice by flinging pudding across the classroom. I had to sendhim down to Ms. Pickles. By the time I got back into the class,they had settled down and were enjoying their yummy models.Sadly, I don’t think my blood sugar could take all the richness,
    • so I just had one gummy worm and no cookies or pudding. Hopeeverything is going well in your classes. Let me know.Take care,RobDay 1: Soil ExplorationMe (7:30am): Hey Gertrude! Startin’ my unit today! Wish me luck!Me (9:45 am): I don’t no y I wasted by breath explaining the class rules. The moment we gotoutside the kids took off runnin’. its gonna be one of those days…Day 3: EarthwormsMe (10:00am): I shouldve known, I should’ve known! I just sent one of my boys to the nursebcuz he swallowed a worm. He said his group dared him to. Now he is crying bcuz his groupalso told him that the worm is gonna to eat his insides >_<Day 5: Soil ErosionMe (9:30): ________ ___________ _____________________Me: (10:15): TGIF!!!!!!!!!!Day 6: Growing CrystalsMe (9:35): So you kno the boy who ate the worm? Well he is now sittin’ in the principal’s officebcuz he threw salt into another boy’s eyes after the boy asked him how the worm was doing.You know, no matter how much you prepare, something is bound to go wrong.Day 7: Properties of RockMe (9:50): So far so good. Today has been pretty good. I can’t wait toMe (10:15): Fire Drill….it was rainingDay 8: Breaking RocksMe (945): I’m in a dark corner somewhere, please HELP.ME!Day 10: Making SoilMe (9:30): Last day of the unit! Hooray!Me (10:00): Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty, I’m free at last!
    • DAY 1 klchelak Kate Chelak @gertrude Starting our unit on soil today! Woo!!! #soexcited 7:45am klchelak Kate Chelak @gertrude Just saw a third grader high-tailing it out of here, @ericca flying behind him. Shielding my students’ eyes so they don’t get ideas. 9:44am klchelak Kate Chelak @gertrude The sky is blue, the air is warm, the warn-down rocks and decaying matter are in the kids’ hands… 10:02amDAY 2 klchelak Kate Chelak @gertrude Overheard today at the end of class: subsoil, humus, bedrock, topsoil, these are the things for which we toil #studentsongs 10:05amDAY 3 klchelak Kate Chelak @gertrude #worried about how my squeamish girls are going to react today to the worm bins 7:43am klchelak Kate Chelak @gertrude the girls were awesome! “Totally into it” as one of them said. #wormbinforthewin 11:37amDAY 5 klchelak Kate Chelak @gertrude You wouldn’t believe how creative some of these kids are! Erosion wouldn’t be a problem if they were in charge of things. 3:14pm
    • DAY 6 klchelak Kate Chelak @gertrude Growing crystals today! Wish us luck. 7:32am klchelak Kate Chelak @gertrude No one ate anything! #success 5:56pmDAY 9 klchelak Kate Chelak @gertrude No success. Remember those crystals we made? Two kids decided they wanted to see how they tasted today. #goingtothenurse 11:34pmDAY 10 klchelak Kate Chelak @gertrude They’ve learned SO MUCH this unit! #soproud Also, #tgif 4:01pm
    • BibliographyCalifornia Science Center (2011). Post visit activity: Wind erosion. Retrieved from http://www.californiasciencecenter.org/Education/GroupPrograms/BigLab/Erosion/docs/ ErosionPost.pdfDent, E. (2011). Breaking Rocks: Exploration activity.Geology Shop (2002). Education, geology. Retrieved from http://www.geologyshop.co.uk/educat~1.htmGK-12 Fellows Program (2010). Wind erosion and how we can prevent it. Retrieved from http://gk-12.osu.edu/Lessons/4th%20Grade/Wind%20Erosion%204.pdfHome Science Tools: The Gateway to Discovery (2011). Rock experiments. Retrieved from http://www.hometrainingtools.com/rock-cycle-project/a/1349/Hot Chalk Education (2011). Crystals, Christmas, and Science. Retrieved from http://www.lessonplanspage.com/scienceartmdchristmascrystals46-htmRocks for Kids (2011). Identifying Minerals. Retrieved from http://www.rocksforkids.com/RFK/identification.htmlSoil-Net (2010). Soil erosion. Retrieved from http://www.soil-net.com/dev/page.cfm?pageid=secondary_threats_erosionS.O.S Classroom (2010). Crystal growing- cool science experiment. Retrieved from http://sosclassroom.org/summersciencefair2011/grades-k-2-chemistry-growing-crystalsTeacher Tube (2010). Wind erosion and the American dustbowl. Retrieved from http://www.teachertube.com/viewVideo.php?video_id=147083&title=WindErosionandtheAmericanDustbowlUnderground Adventure (2005). Worm bins for you classroom. Retrieved from http://archive.fieldmuseum.org/undergroundadventure/teachers/worm_bins.shtmlUniversity of Louisville Department of Mathematics (2005). Lesson Planning Guide. Retrieved from http://www.math.louisville.edu/gems/LessonPlans/SoilLessonPlan.pdfU.S. Environmental Protection Agency (2009). What on Earth is soil? Retrieved from http://www.epa.gov/gmpo/edresources/soil.html
    • Virginia Department of Education (2011). Science standards of learning curriculum framework: Grade three. Retrieved from http://www.doe.virginia.gov/testing/sol/standards_docs/science/index.shtml