Third Grade
Science
Unit: 05
Lesson: 03
Duration: 5 days
Earth Matters: Investigating Soil
© 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 1 ...
3rd
Grade
Science
Unit: 05 Lesson: 03
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Key Understandings and Guiding Questions:
Rocks...
3rd
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Properties of Soil (1 per student)
Properties o...
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topsoil, or potting soil provides the nutrients...
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4. Explain to students that forces such as wind...
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See the handout: Where does my lunch come from?...
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microscope), a water mister, and this handout, ...
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students to state that they saw layers and ther...
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sponge)? Accept all answers.
5. Distribute the ...
3rd
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Can plants get too little water? Yes. If a pla...
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Evaluation. Evaluate with the handout: Evaluat...
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Properties of Soils KEY
Record your observatio...
3rd
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Properties of Soils
Record your observations o...
3rd
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Science
Unit: 05 Lesson: 03
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A Closer Look at Soils
Properties My
Observati...
3rd
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Science
Unit: 05 Lesson: 03
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It’s Settled
Materials:
Procedure:
1. Using yo...
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Sponge Capacity KEY
Materials:
Answers may var...
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Unit: 05 Lesson: 03
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Sponge Capacity
Materials:
Prediction:
I think...
3rd
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Unit: 05 Lesson: 03
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Soil’s Water Capacity KEY (pp. 1 of 2)
Materia...
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Soil’s Water Capacity KEY (pp. 2 of 2)
Sand Lo...
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Soil’s Water Capacity (pp. 1 of 2)
Materials:
...
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Soil’s Water Capacity (pp. 2 of 2)
Sand Loam C...
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Evaluation KEY (pp. 1 of 2)
Answers may vary b...
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Evaluation KEY (pp. 2 of 2)
Water Retention Te...
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Evaluation (pp. 1 of 2)
Materials: Mystery sam...
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Evaluation (pp. 2 of 2)
Water Retention Test
R...
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Analogies
Complete the analogy sentences to re...
3rd
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Unit: 05 Lesson: 03
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Where Does My Lunch Come From?
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GLOBE Elementary Resources
The website looks l...
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BIBLOGRAPHY
Benchmarks for Science Literacy Am...
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  1. 1. Third Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 Duration: 5 days Earth Matters: Investigating Soil © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 1 of 29 Lesson Synopsis: Students will explore properties of soil and its importance as a natural resource. TEKS: 3.5 The student knows that systems exist in the world. 3.5A Observe and identify simple systems such as a sprouted seed and a wooden toy car. 3.5B Observe a simple system and describe the role of various parts such as a yo-yo and string. 3.11 The student knows that the natural world includes earth materials and objects in the sky. 3.11A Identify and describe the importance of earth materials including rocks, soil, water, and gases of the atmosphere in the local area and classify them as renewable, nonrenewable, or inexhaustible resources. 3.11B Identify and record properties of soils such as color and texture, capacity to retain water, and ability to support the growth of plants. Process TEKS: 3.1 The student conducts field and laboratory investigations following home and school safety procedures and environmentally appropriate and ethical practices. 3.1A Demonstrate safe practices during field and laboratory investigations. 3.2 The student uses scientific inquiry methods during field and laboratory investigations. 3.2A Plan and implement descriptive investigations including asking well-defined questions, formulating testable hypotheses, and selecting and using equipment and technology. 3.2B Collect information by observing and measuring. 3.2C Analyze and interpret information to construct reasonable explanations from direct and indirect evidence. 3.2D Communicate valid conclusions. 3.2E Construct simple graphs, tables, maps, and charts to organize, examine and evaluate information. 3.3 . The student knows that information, critical thinking, and scientific problem solving are used in making decisions. 3.3C Represent the natural world using models and identify their limitations. 3.4 The student knows how to use a variety of tools and methods to conduct science inquiry. 3.4A Collect and analyze information using tools including calculators, microscopes, cameras, safety goggles, sound recorders, clocks, computers, thermometers, hand lenses, meter sticks, rulers, balances, magnets, and compasses. 3.4B Demonstrate that repeated investigations may increase the reliability of results. GETTING READY FOR INSTRUCTION Performance Indicator(s): Students will compare a mystery sample of soil with a given sample. They will be asked to observe and describe their mystery sample and compare its properties with the given sample. (3.11B) ELPS: 1E, 2E, 2I, 3D, 3H, 4E, 5B, 5G Classify an assortment of pictures depicting various natural resources as renewable, nonrenewable, or inexhaustible. Summarize the importance of these materials by providing at least one example of how each is used in the local area (Texas). (3.11A) [This performance Indicator will be performed in Lesson 6] ELPS: 1E, 2E, 2I, 3D, 3H, 4E, 5B, 5G
  2. 2. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 2 of 29 Key Understandings and Guiding Questions: Rocks, soil, water, and air represent natural resources. — Which resource is the most important: rock, soil, water, or air? All natural resources are renewable, nonrenewable, or inexhaustible. — What is a natural resource? — Why is it important to protect this natural resource? The properties of matter (soil) determine their possible uses. — What are some properties of soil? — How do soils differ? — How do the different properties of soil make it useful? Vocabulary of Instruction: weathering soil properties texture retain Materials: student journals chart and markers or board cookies that contain nuts like Pecan Sandies paper plates small plastic jars or containers with lids water paper towels rich top soil or potting soil measuring spoons plastic spoons sand clay tray (optional) crayons hand lenses water misters measuring cups sticky notes two liter or three liter bottles rubber bands coffee filters cups (optional) graduated cylinders sponges scissors water droppers calculators (optional) Appropriate materials may be substituted as needed to incorporate district resources and availability. Resources: The following links provide photos of landslides, weathered rock formations, and river worn rocks. http://landslides.usgs.gov/learning/photos/catalina_mountains__arizona_2006_event__u.s._/sabino_canyon http://3dparks.wr.usgs.gov/joshuatree/html/a59.htm http://3dparks.wr.usgs.gov/mtrainier/html2/mr916.htm See link below for “The World‟s Apple” demonstration and activity sheet. ftp://ftp-fc.sc.egov.usda.gov/TX/factsheets/fact_apple.pdf http://www.epa.gov/safewater/kids/grades_k-3_groundwater_movement.html is a website for a lesson on permeability and porosity. http://www.sparta.k12.il.us/SID/plantunit/growthofbeanseed.htm is a site that provides a graphic and written explanation of bean seed development. The Magic School Bus Plants a Seed video is a resource. http://www.globe.gov/fsl/html/templ.cgi?EG_soil&lang=en&nav=0 is a website that will allow teachers to download a soil module storybook. The “Scoop on Soils” storybook is a resource that will be used in the Elaborate phase of this lesson. STATE RESOURCES: See TEXTEAMS: Systems, Grade 3 Vista: More Than Dirt for activities to supplement or substitute some portions of this lesson. Advance Preparation: 1. Make copies of the following handouts: Transparency: Where Does My Lunch Come From? (1 per teacher)
  3. 3. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 3 of 29 Properties of Soil (1 per student) Properties of Soil KEY (1 per teacher) A Closer Look at Soils (1 per student) Analogies (1 per student) It’s Settled (1 per student or group) Sponge Capacity (1 per student) Sponge Capacity KEY (1 per teacher) Soil’s Water Capacity (1 per student or group) Soil’s Water Capacity KEY (1 per teacher) GLOBE Elementary Resources (1 per teacher) Evaluation (1 per student or group) Evaluation KEY (1 per teacher) 2. Gather two liter and/or three liter bottles. 3. Download or bookmark photos of landslides, weathered rock and water-worn river rocks. See links in Resource section. 4. Make a transparency of handout: Where does my lunch come from? or obtain a cafeteria tray with a typical school lunch. 5. Copy the activity sheet for “The World‟s Apple” (see link in Resources) (1 per student or 1 for teacher demo) 6. Gather rich top soil or potting soil to use as loam. Loam can also be created. 7. Cut sponges into small squares for student investigation. 8. Create funnels from collected two or three liter bottles by cutting the tops off of the bottles. The bottom 2/3 of the bottle will make a great collection cup. This funnel system can be used for many things. Keep the caps. 9. Students will be observing the four planters or pots of bean seeds that were planted at the beginning of the unit. They will also be reflecting on the predictions recorded on the bar graph, “Which Earth Material Grows the Healthiest Plant?” 10. Download “Scoop on Soil” (http://www.globe.gov/fsl/html/templ.cgi?EG_soil&lang=en&nav=0) and run copies of the module or be prepared to share it using technology (LCD projector). Background Information: Most of the land on Earth is covered by soil. Where does soil come from? Is all soil the same? This lesson begins with a brief introduction to the process of weathering. Students observe how the forces of wind, water, gravity, etc., break and grind rock down into smaller and smaller particles. These smaller particles known as sand, silt, and clay become part of another very important natural resource, the Earth‟s soil. By themselves, sand, silt, and clay are not soil. Soil is a mixture of rock particles, organic matter called humus, water, and air. Just like rocks, soils have different physical properties such as color, particle size, texture, odor, consistency, absorbency, etc. Particle size relates to many important properties of soil. Sand particles are the coarsest particles found in soil. They feel hard and scratchy and don‟t stick together or hold water well. Silt particles are smaller grains of sand that feel smoother and softer. Clay particles are the smallest of all. Clay absorbs a lot of water and sticks together. Humus is a unique property of soil. Humus contains the valuable nutrients needed for plants to grow. These valuable nutrients come from decomposing plants and animals. Millions of tiny living things such as bacteria and fungi live in the soil and help to turn dead plants and animals into this dark, soft, sticky substance known as humus. Living animals contribute to properties of the soil. Earthworms, ants, and beetles make spaces in the soil as they burrow through it. These spaces are filled with air and water which helps plants to grow. Most soils are a mixture of sand, silt, or clay, with varying amounts of humus. Agronomists classify soils by the percent of each type of particle that occurs in a soil sample. The percentages of sand, silt, and clay are important for farmer s and gardeners because plants require different conditions for optimal growth. Too much sand can cause too much water to drain away from plant roots. A soil that is predominantly clay may hold too much water and cause the roots to rot. Loam is a name given to a mixture of sand, silt, and clay with a high percentage of humus. Soil scientists can conduct tests to find out more about a soil sample. When a soil sample is mixed with water and allowed to settle, the particle layers will separate based on particle size. The larger particles will settle on the bottom and the smallest ones will be on top. Organic material will float. This test creates a “soil profile” and allows students to see how much of each component is in the sample. Soils can also be tested for their capacity to retain water. In this lesson, students conduct a fair test to determine the water retention properties of sand, clay, and loam. The properties of soil determine their uses. Sand‟s water-draining properties make it perfect for playgrounds and sandboxes. Clay‟s properties, on the other hand, make it perfect for pottery or moisture-absorbing kitty litter. Loam, rich
  4. 4. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 4 of 29 topsoil, or potting soil provides the nutrients for plant growth. Soil is the beginning of the food chain. Soil‟s capacity to sustain life, both plant and animal, makes it one of our most valuable resources. GETTING READY FOR INSTRUCTION SUPPLEMENTAL PLANNING DOCUMENT Instructors are encouraged to supplement, and substitute resources, materials, and activities to differentiate instruction to address the needs of learners. The Exemplar Lessons are one approach to teaching and reaching the Performance Indicators and Specificity in the Instructional Focus Document for this unit. A Microsoft Word template for this planning document is located at www.cscope.us/sup_plan_temp.doc. If a supplement is created electronically, users are encouraged to upload the document to their Lesson Plans as a Lesson Plan Resource in your district Curriculum Developer site for future reference. INSTRUCTIONAL PROCEDURES Instructional Procedures Notes for Teacher ENGAGE NOTE: 1 Day = 50 minutes Suggested time: Day 1 1. Distribute the following to each student or student group: cookies (some kind that has pieces of nuts like Pecan Sandies), paper plates, and small plastic jars or containers of water. 2. Explain to the students that the cookie, once again, represents a slab of rocky earth material. Provide the following directions: Drop the cookie onto the paper plate from chin level. Ask: What happened to the rock, chalk or cookie? It broke into pieces of various sizes. Pick up the plate of pieces. Rub two of the pieces together over the paper plate. Ask: What did you see happening? The pieces are grinding down into smaller pieces. What happened to the original pieces? They got smaller and were shaped differently. Say: Place all of the pieces into the plastic jar/container (teacher fills it 2/3 full of water). Put the lid on securely and shake the container to allow the water to wash over the pieces. After a few minutes, ask: What did you observe in the jar? The cookie has worn down even more. The water is cloudy or murky and not clear. Smaller pieces may have broken off and settled to the bottom or be floating on top. 3. Show students pictures of: 1) a landslide or avalanche, 2) a weathered rock formation, and 3) a rushing stream with smooth river rocks. Tell students that the rocks in the pictures have been broken and worn down into smaller and smaller pieces by several forces: gravity, wind, and water. Ask (as you show each picture): What force might have caused the rocks to fall down the cliff or mountainside and break into smaller pieces? gravity How did we model this with our cookie? We dropped it and it broke. What force might have carved out this shape by wearing it down with blowing sand? Wind How did we model this with our cookie? We rubbed them together wearing them down into smaller pieces and reshaping them. What force might have tumbled these rocks until the edges were broken down and smooth? rushing water How did we model this with our cookie? We tumbled them in water breaking them down further into smaller and smaller pieces. MATERIALS: cookies with nuts paper plates small plastic jars with lids water paper towels Safety note: Be careful of any food allergies that your students might have. The cookies are not to be eaten, but some people are very allergic to nuts. Gloves might be an option. You might draw students‟ attention to the fact that this piece of rock (cookie) looks different than the piece of rock we used for mining. Just like rocks, these cookies have different ingredients or minerals. Landslides: http://landslides.usgs.gov/learning/phot os/catalina_mountains__arizona_2006_ event__u.s._/sabino_canyon Weathered Rock Formations http://3dparks.wr.usgs.gov/joshuatree/ht ml/a59.htm Smooth River Rocks http://3dparks.wr.usgs.gov/mtrainier/htm l2/mr916.htm
  5. 5. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 5 of 29 4. Explain to students that forces such as wind, water, and gravity break rock down into smaller and smaller pieces. Humans do this as well. Remind students about how they broke the cookie (rocks) while mining for chocolate chips (coal deposits). Tell students that this process of breaking rocks down into smaller and smaller pieces is called weathering. Over millions of years, weathering (caused by forces such as wind, water, and gravity) has changed the Earth‟s surface. 5. Have students examine the various sized particles from the cookie model. Explain that as the Earth‟s rock materials are broken down into smaller and smaller pieces, those pieces are given different names. Very large rocks are sometimes called boulders. Smaller pieces may be called rocks. Rocks then become pebbles, pebbles become gravel, and gravel is worn down into even smaller particles called sand, silt, and clay. These smaller particles (known as sand, silt, and clay) become part of another very important natural resource, the Earth‟s soil. 6. Dispose of cookie material and clean up the area. MISCONCEPTION: Weathering and erosion are the same thing. EXPLORE/EXPLAIN Suggested time: Days 1 and 2 1. Distribute bags of rich topsoil called loam (or potting soil), spoons, paper plates, and hand lenses to each group of students. Instruct them to use their senses to observe the soil. Each student can put a spoonful of the soil on their plate to examine and manipulate (this is a hands-on activity). Challenge them to come up with several different observations using each sense (except taste). 2. Have students share some of their observations as a class. If students haven‟t provided general information about color, consistency, texture, odor, or sound when rubbed on the plate, prompt them to examine those properties more closely. Ask: Did you have any surprises? Students should notice that there are other things in the soil besides particles of rock such as remains of plants and/or animals. Why might there be remains or parts of plants in the soil? Answers may vary What animals might be living in the soil? Answers may vary What would happen if there weren’t any soil? Accept all answers. 3. (Optional) Show a picture of a cafeteria tray with a typical school lunch (or have a real example on a cafeteria tray for display in front of the room). Safety note: Caution students to not put the soil or their soiled fingers in their mouths or eyes. Refer to the rich top soil or potting soil as loam. While potting soil does not meet all the specific requirements for loam, it would give the students too many context clues to refer to it as “potting soil”. MATERIALS: rich top soil or potting soil called loam spoons paper plates container with lid measuring spoon crayons water hand lens paper towels sand clay water misters Transparency: Where Does My Lunch Come From? (1 per teacher)
  6. 6. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 6 of 29 See the handout: Where does my lunch come from? for a clipart picture. After identifying each item on the tray, have students discuss with their partner where each item comes from. Ask: How are the items on the tray connected to the soil? Answers may vary. Let students share their ideas with the class (guiding the discussion as needed). How are we connected to the soil? Answers may vary. If necessary, draw a diagram on the board or chart tracing our dependency on the soil for the things we eat. (Humans eat beef, eggs, and other meat, which comes from animals like cows, and chickens. The animals eat grains like corn, sorghum, and hay which all grow in the soil. Humans also eat apples, tomatoes, lettuce, and french fries which come from the fruit, leaves, and roots of plants. The plants grow in the soil.) 4. (Optional) Illustrate how a very small amount of our land is available for growing plants to supply the world‟s food by either showing or demonstrating “The World‟s Apple” activity. See “The World‟s Apple” activity sheet for a picture of this demonstration. 5. Remind students about the earlier activity in which you planted bean seeds in 4 different earth materials. Refer to the bar graph with the students‟ predictions. Ask: What must the soil provide for plants to be able to grow and function? Students should indicate that plants need water, food, air, sunlight, and space. Do you think any of these 4 earth materials is too rocky to support the growth of plants? Students should indicate or reiterate that the gravel is too rocky. Do you they think that all soil is the same? Answers may vary 6. Let‟s look at some different soils: loam (potting soil), sand, and clay. 7. Distribute bags of sand and clay, and two more paper plates, to each group of students. Students should still have spoons and hand lenses from their previous work with loam (potting soil). Each student can put a spoonful of the sand and clay onto two separate plates to examine, manipulate, and compare. Challenge them to come up with several different observations using each sense (except taste). 8. Allow students time to observe the physical properties of their samples and record their findings (including their observations from the previous loam exploration) in a three-column T-chart in their journal. The handout: Properties of Soil can be used as a guide. 9. After students have explored and recorded their observations, ask: Do the samples look the same? Answers may vary, but samples should appear different. What other tools or activities could you use to study the soils more closely? Answers may vary, but students might suggest using microscopes or hand-held microscopes, adding water, performing other fair tests, etc. 10. Distribute the handout: A Closer Look at Soils to the students. Say: Using tools of science including our senses, a hand lens (or Handout: Properties of Soil (1 per student) Handout: Properties of Soil KEY 1 per teacher) Handout: A Closer Look at Soils (1 per student) Handout: Analogies (1 per student) Handout: It’s Settled (1 per student or group) See link below for “The World‟s Apple” demonstration and activity sheet. ftp://ftp- fc.sc.egov.usda.gov/TX/factsheets/fact_ apple.pdf This would be an appropriate time to conclude the day‟s activities. Bag students‟ soil samples, plates, spoons, and hand lenses for easy retrieval. Resume Day 2 activities tomorrow.
  7. 7. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 7 of 29 microscope), a water mister, and this handout, we are going to further explore the three samples. Observe the color of the samples of soil and indicate your observation in the first row of the table. Using your hand lens, look closely at the different soils. Record your observations. After rubbing the soils between your thumb and index finger, record what you feel. Tell students that after observing the soil while it is dry, they can add water to learn more about its texture, color, shape and flexibility, etc. Mist your samples with the water mister. How do the samples behave? Put the moist samples in your hand. Roll the moist samples with your fingers. Record your findings in the chart. Last of all, using your sense of smell, waft or wave the air above the moist samples toward your nose. If a scent is detected, record that information or data into the chart as well. 11. Allow students to share their findings with the class. 12. (Optional) If time permits, let students complete the handout: Analogies to further explore loam, sand, and clay. 13. While students still have the bagged soil samples and moistened spoonfuls of different soils, share with students the first 4 directions for the next activity from the handout: It’s Settled. It is not necessary to distribute the handout at this time. 14. Provide the containers, water, and measurement tools as listed on the handout: It’s Settled. 15. Student groups should place their “settling” containers in an area that will remain undisturbed until the next day. This would be a good time to conclude the day‟s activities since the results of this test will not be observable right away. If your students need help creating a chart, one has been provided for your students in the Handout: Properties of Soils. Continue to keep students in small student groups. Encourage all students to record their data. Pictures and words are acceptable. Handout: A Closer Look at Soils Grades 3-5: Students should know that one way to make sense of something is to think how it is like something more familiar. Benchmarks for Science Literacy Handout: Analogies A Teacher Key is not included for Analogies because the analogies will all vary based on the students‟ perceptions. Handout: It’s Settled EXPLORE/EXPLAIN Suggested time: Day 3 1. To further investigate soils, let‟s examine how the soils settled in water. Distribute the handout: It’s Settled. Ask: What did you see after the soils settled? Answers may vary but lead Students should continue to work in groups.
  8. 8. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 8 of 29 students to state that they saw layers and there were things, organic material, humus, floating on the top. Which soil was on bottom? Sand should be on the bottom. Which soil was on top? Floaters came from the loam. Which soil settled on top of the sand? Clay settles on top of the sand. Why do you think the soils settled in this order? Answers may vary but lead students to understand that soils have different properties. Some soil particles are larger than others. The larger grains of soil will settle faster due to the pull of gravity. The lighter material will float on top of the water because it is less dense than water. How would the results of this test look if most of your soil sample was composed of sand? Can you make a sketch of your prediction? The bottom layer would be larger. Can a settling test be used to help identify the composition of an unknown soil sample? Yes 2. Let‟s see what other tests we can do to learn more about the properties of soil. Show students a sponge. Ask: What is this object called? A sponge What are some of its uses? Answers may vary, but lead students to an answer that introduces the fact that sponges can hold water. Allow students to examine a small piece of sponge with a hand lens. What property of sponges makes them able to absorb and hold or retain water? They have holes. They are not solid. How many water droplets do you think your sponge can hold or retain? Answers may vary. Have students share their predictions and write them down in their journals. How could you test to see how many water droplets your sponge can hold or retain? Answers may vary, but help students design a procedure to drop water droplets until the sponge cannot hold any more water. 3. Use the handout: Sponge Capacity to guide the students in their predictions, investigation, and conclusions. Tell students that they will have an opportunity to apply what they have learned about sponges to soils. Ask: Have you ever made a mud pie? What makes a good mud pie? Accept all answers. Lead students to share that mud pies take soil and water. Do you think the type of soil used in the mud pie would make a difference? Accept all answers. Using our past investigations to guide you, which soil – loam, sand, clay, or a mixture of the three – would make the best mud pie? Accept all answers. Have the students record their predictions on a sticky note. Using the sticky notes, create a class bar graph to indicate their thoughts at this time. 4. After the students have placed their prediction on the class bar graph, go over their thoughts. For example, most of you think that _______ will be the best for making mud pies. Encourage students to share rationale for their choices. Ask: What do you think we will learn about each type of soil by making mud pies? Answers may vary, but lead students to look at how each type of soil holds water. How might we test a soil’s ability to hold or retain water (like a MATERIALS: tray (optional) container with lid sand loam clay measuring cup water hand lens Handout: It’s Settled (1 per student or group) MATERIALS: sponge hand lens sticky notes scissors water water droppers container to hold water Handout: Sponge Capacity (1 per student) Handout: Sponge Capacity KEY (1 per teacher) (cut sponge into small sections) “Retain” is a new science word for this unit. Make sure the students take the time to understand this new word and how it relates to soils. English Language Learners may identify with the word retain, but from a different perspective. Handout: Sponge Capacity Sample Mud Pie Graph
  9. 9. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 9 of 29 sponge)? Accept all answers. 5. Distribute the handout: Soil’s Water Capacity and materials to each group of students. After the test, allow students to share their findings with the class. Students should begin to wonder about why some soils hold more water than others. Review the properties of the soils with the students. Help them connect the size of the particles to how the soil behaves. Let‟s look back at our original predictions. Ask: Were we correct? Answers may vary based on original responses. 6. (Optional) A student activity that shows why water travels through some types of soils better than others can be found at the following website: http://www.epa.gov/safewater/kids/grades_k-3_groundwater_movement.html MATERIALS: sand loam clay three or two liter bottles coffee filters or cheesecloth cups or bottoms of cut liter bottles water calculators (optional) graduated cylinder measuring cup rubber bands Handout: Soil’s Water Capacity (1 per student or group) Handout: Soil’s Water Capacity KEY (1 per teacher) www.epa.gov/safewater/kids/grades_k- 3_groundwater_movement.html is a site for a kinesthetic extension to this lesson. Also, a permeability race is outlined in the “extension” portion of the activity. ELABORATE Suggested time: Day 4 1. Ask: Based on what you have learned, are all soils the same? Soils have unique properties. Why are soils important, and how are they used? Answers may vary. Soil is used for a variety of things. Soil is used for plant growth. Sand is used in playgrounds. Sand is also used in cement. Clay is a component of many ceramic pots. Clay is used in kitty litter. Now that you have studied different properties of soil, do you think that plants grow equally well in all kinds of soil? Answers may vary. 2. We know that plants depend on several things for survival. Ask: What does a plant need to survive? Answers may vary but plants need air, water, nutrients, sunlight, and space. Students may also say soil, which holds air, water, and nutrients. How do plants get their water? Water is absorbed in the roots. Where does a plant get its air? A plant breathes or respires through its leaves, stem, flowers, and roots. Can plants get too much water? Yes. If a plant gets too much water, it will rot and die. MATERIALS: Handout: GLOBE Elementary Resources (1 per teacher) Expected Results: The plants planted in the loam should be growing the best. The clay should have placed the seeds in an environment that was too wet. The sand and gravel should have placed a seed in an environment that allowed water to flow too easily.
  10. 10. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 10 of 29 Can plants get too little water? Yes. If a plant gets too little water, it will wilt and die. 3. Explain to the students that they should concentrate their study of plants on how they interact with the soils. Remind them of the four pots of beans that they planted at the beginning of the unit. Tell them they need to look at the plants again and use what they have learned about soils to help explain the results. 4. Display the planters, the bar graph, “Which Earth Material Grows the Healthiest Plant?” and the chart which describes characteristics of a healthy plant. Ask: Based on the graph, which earth material did we predict would support the growth of our bean plants the best? See graph Which plants seem to be the healthiest? The ones in loam. What action does a bean seed do when it is planted? The bean seed sends out a root and begins to grow a shoot toward the light. Does the root need anything from the soil? The root needs air, water, and nutrients. Does it matter how much of these key ingredients the root receives? Yes, conditions need to be “just right” for healthy bean growth. Do differences in the properties of the soil affect plant growth? Yes Are plants the same all over Texas? No, plants change from region to region. What plants grow in our local area? Answers may vary. Is soil one of the factors that determine what plants survive in an area? Yes 5. Conclude this lesson by reading together the GLOBE literature connection, “Scoop on Soil.” See link in teacher notes and screenshot of website in the handout: Globe Elementary Resources. Ask: In the natural world, do soils all look the same? No How did the kids from Pinewood Elementary represent the different soils exposed in the holes that Scoop dug? They recorded their observations using a table with pictures in their journals. What treasures did the kids find? Answers may vary. What leaves behind treasures in soil? Answers may vary but plants and animals, including humans, can leave behind treasures in soil. Do animals interact with the soil? Yes How do animals interact with the soil? Animals enrich the soil in many ways. Some animals leave their wastes in the soil; some animals dig in the soil; some animals live in the soil. What animals around here (in our local area) use the soil for their home? Answers may vary 6. This would be an appropriate time to add the words: weathering, soil, texture, and retain to student journals and the word wall. Because there are so many variables that could be different from classroom to classroom, individual results will vary. If the bean seeds in the clay are not responding, you might have the students use their senses (not taste) to observe the bean seeds. Seeds that rot will have several observable characteristics. If the bean seeds have not germinated sufficiently, move this section of the lesson to later in the unit. The following is a non-interactive explanation of bean seed development: http://www.sparta.k12.il.us/SID/plantunit /growthofbeanseed.htm. http://www.globe.gov/fsl/html/templ.cgi? EG_soil&lang=en&nav=0 is a website that will take teachers to a soil module storybook. This module called “Scoop on Soil” is a literature connection that will allow students to further investigate different soils and their treasures. If time permits, allow students to research and investigate local animals that are closely associated with soil – worms, prairie dogs, gophers, etc. EVALUATE Suggested time: Day 5 Using their experiences from the past few days, students are going to explore a “mystery” soil sample. Students are expected to use their notes from previous soil observations and tests to help them identify the properties of this “mystery” soil. Students need to record their observations on the handout: A mystery soil sample can be created by mixing different amounts of sand, clay, and loam together or by bringing in some local topsoil for testing.
  11. 11. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 11 of 29 Evaluation. Evaluate with the handout: Evaluation KEY. MATERIALS: crayons Handout: Evaluation (1 per student or group) Handout: Evaluation KEY (1 per teacher)
  12. 12. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 12 of 29 Properties of Soils KEY Record your observations of soils in the chart. Loam Sand Clay Answers may vary. Twigs Dark Light-fluffy Smells earthy Answers may vary. Looks like tiny crystals Light in color Grainy Easy to see Rough texture Answers may vary. Red (or gray) Clumpy Grains are not easy to see Smooth
  13. 13. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 13 of 29 Properties of Soils Record your observations of soils in the chart. Loam Sand Clay
  14. 14. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 14 of 29 A Closer Look at Soils Properties My Observations of Loam My Observations of Sand My Observations of Clay Using a crayon, color the color that best represents your soil sample. Draw what you see when you observe the soil with a hand lens. Describe how your soil feels when you rub it in between your fingers. Describe your observations after misting the soil with water. Using your sense of smell, describe the scent of your sample.
  15. 15. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 15 of 29 It’s Settled Materials: Procedure: 1. Using your soil samples, measure equal amounts of each soil and place in the container. 2. Add water until the container is ¾ full. Place the lid on the container. 3. Be sure the lid is secure. 4. Shake well and allow soil time to settle. 5. Draw and label your observations in the space below. A hand lens would be helpful. Sand ClayLoam Measuring Spoon Container Water
  16. 16. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 16 of 29 Sponge Capacity KEY Materials: Answers may vary. Prediction: I think my piece of sponge will hold ________ drops of water. Procedure: 1. Place a piece of sponge between thumb and forefinger. 2. Fill the dropper with water. 3. Count as you drop water on the sponge. Drop slowly. 4. Have a recorder keep up with the number of drops. 5. Keep adding drops until the sponge cannot hold any more drops and water falls out the bottom of the sponge. 6. Record the number of water droplets your sponge held. 7. Clean up any spills with paper towels. Results: My piece of sponge held _______ drops of water. This was <, >, or = to my prediction. Conclusions: My sponge held water because of its open spaces. Small piece of sponge Dropper Water Paper Towels
  17. 17. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 17 of 29 Sponge Capacity Materials: Prediction: I think my piece of sponge will hold ________ drops of water. Procedure: 1. Place a piece of sponge between thumb and forefinger. 2. Fill the dropper with water. 3. Count as you drop water on the sponge. Drop slowly. 4. Have a recorder keep up with the number of drops. 5. Keep adding drops until the sponge cannot hold any more drops and water falls out the bottom of the sponge. 6. Record the number of water droplets your sponge held. 7. Clean up any spills with paper towels. Results: My piece of sponge held _______ drops of water. This was <, >, or = to my prediction. Conclusions: My sponge held water because _________________________________ ____________________________________________________________ Small piece of sponge Dropper Water Paper Towels
  18. 18. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 18 of 29 Soil’s Water Capacity KEY (pp. 1 of 2) Materials: Procedure: 1. Take the caps off the funnels and set aside. 2. With rubber bands, secure a small piece of filter over the opening of each funnel. 3. Recap the funnels. 4. Place equal amounts of each type of soil into three funnels and rest the funnels in a cup or bottle base. (Recommended amount of soil: 250 mL or 1 cup) 5. Measure about 200 milliliters of water using a graduated cylinder. 6. Carefully pour the water into the top of the funnel. 7. Allow the funnel system to work for 5-10 minutes or long enough to allow the earth materials to become saturated. 8. Observe your system and record your observations. 9. At your teacher‟s signal, lift funnels carefully above the cups. Unscrew the caps and allow the water to leave the system. 10.After the water drains, recap the funnels. 11.Measure the amount of water that traveled through the soil by pouring your cup of drained water into a graduated cylinder. Record your results in the table on the next page. 12.(Optional) Use calculators to find the amount of water actually retained by each type of soil. ___ mL (the original amount poured into each funnel - ___ mL (the amount drained into each cup = ___ mL (the actual amount of water retained by each type of soil). Funnels Cups Coffee filters Rubber bands Graduated Cylinder
  19. 19. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 19 of 29 Soil’s Water Capacity KEY (pp. 2 of 2) Sand Loam Clay Water in Cup (mL) Water in Cup (mL) Water in Cup (mL) Answers may vary, but expected results are that sand will have the MOST water in the drainage cup because it retains the LEAST water in the soil. Loam which is a mixture of sand, clay, silt, and organic material should have results that fall in between sand and clay. Answers may vary but expected results are that clay will have the LEAST water in the drainage cup because it retains the MOST water in the soil. Questions: 1. Which soil retained the most water (allowed the least amount of water to flow into the cup)? The clay soil retained the most water. 2. Which soil retained the least amount of water (allowed the most water to flow into the cup)? The sand soil retained the least amount of water. 3. Arrange the soils from least to greatest based on their ability to retain (hold) water. Least Greatest Sand Loam Clay 4. Which type of soil acted the most like a sponge? Students may look at this sponge analogy from two different perspectives. The clay acts like a sponge because it absorbs and holds water. The sand acts like a sponge that has been squeezed - it releases the water. Use the results from your tests to make the following predictions. 5. Which type of soil do you think would make the best mud pie? Answers may vary. The point here is to try to get the students to apply what they have learned. A mud pie made of clay would be the best. 6. If you were going to create a recipe for a mud pie, what ingredients would you use? How much of each ingredient would you use? My Recipe: (Use the back of the paper if you need more space.) Answers may vary. CSCOPE Mud Pie: 2 cups clay 350 mL water Put clay and water in a sealable baggie. Add the water. Close the bag. Mix the three ingredients. Form into a fat, round pie.
  20. 20. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 20 of 29 Soil’s Water Capacity (pp. 1 of 2) Materials: Procedure: 1. Take the caps off the funnels and set aside. 2. With rubber bands, secure a small piece of filter over the opening of each funnel. 3. Recap the funnels. 4. Place equal amounts of each type of soil into three funnels and rest the funnels in a cup or bottle base. (Recommended amount of soil: 250 mL or 1 cup) 5. Measure about 200 milliliters of water using a graduated cylinder. 6. Carefully pour the water into the top of the funnel. 7. Allow the funnel system to work for 5-10 minutes or long enough to allow the earth materials to become saturated. 8. Observe your system and record your observations. 9. At your teacher‟s signal, lift funnels carefully above the cups. Unscrew the caps and allow the water to leave the system. 10.After the water drains, recap the funnels. 11.Measure the amount of water that traveled through the soil by pouring your cup of drained water into a graduated cylinder. Record your results in the table on the next page. 12.(Optional) Use calculators to find the amount of water actually retained by each type of soil. ___ mL (the original amount poured into each funnel - ___ mL (the amount drained into each cup = ___ mL (the actual amount of water retained by each type of soil). Funnels Cups Coffee filters Rubber bands Graduated Cylinder
  21. 21. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 21 of 29 Soil’s Water Capacity (pp. 2 of 2) Sand Loam Clay Water in Cup (mL) Water in Cup (mL) Water in Cup (mL) Questions: 7. Which soil retained the most water (allowed the least amount of water to flow into the cup)? 8. Which soil retained the least amount of water (allowed the most water to flow into the cup)? 9. Arrange the soils from least to greatest based on their ability to retain (hold) water. Least Greatest 10.Which type of soil acted the most like a sponge? Use the results from your tests to make the following predictions. 11.Which type of soil do you think would make the best mud pie? 12.If you were going to create a recipe for a mud pie, what ingredients would you use? How much of each ingredient would you use? My Recipe: (Use the back of the paper if you need more space.)
  22. 22. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 22 of 29 Evaluation KEY (pp. 1 of 2) Answers may vary based on the mystery sample that the teacher chooses. Materials: Mystery sample Journal of soil learning experiences Various tools (hand lens, settling chambers, water retention funnels, etc.) Observe the mystery soil sample. Record your observations on soil property chart below. Property My Observations Property My Observations 1. Using a crayon, color the color that best represents your mystery soil sample. 4. Describe your observations after misting the mystery soil with water. 2. Draw what you see when you observe your mystery soil with a hand lens. 5. Using your sense of smell, describe the scent of your mystery soil sample. 3. Describe how your mystery soil feels when you rub it in between your fingers. Other observations Settling Test: Drawing after settling test: What information did you learn from the settling test?
  23. 23. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 23 of 29 Evaluation KEY (pp. 2 of 2) Water Retention Test Remember the water retention test? Set up a similar test to explore your mystery sample. How much water drained into the cup? _____________________ Did your sample retain water more like sand, clay, or loam? If time allows, grow a bean seed in your mystery sample. If time will not allow you to grow a bean seed, use your past observations and the properties of your mystery soil sample to determine if your mystery sample would grow a healthy plant. Answers may vary. _______________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________
  24. 24. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 24 of 29 Evaluation (pp. 1 of 2) Materials: Mystery sample Journal of soil learning experiences Various tools (hand lens, settling chambers, water retention funnels, etc) Observe the mystery soil sample. Record your observations on the soil property chart below. Property My Observations Property My Observations 1. Using a crayon, color the color that best represents your mystery soil sample. 4. Describe your observations after misting the mystery soil with water. 2. Draw what you see when you observe your mystery soil with a hand lens. 5. Using your sense of smell, describe the scent of your mystery soil sample. 3. Describe how your mystery soil feels when you rub it in between your fingers. Other observations Settling Test: Drawing after settling test: What information did you learn from the settling test?
  25. 25. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 25 of 29 Evaluation (pp. 2 of 2) Water Retention Test Remember the water retention test? Set up a similar test to explore your mystery sample. How much water drained into the cup? _____________________ Did your sample retain water more like sand, clay, or loam? If time allows, grow a bean seed in your mystery sample. If time will not allow you to grow a bean seed, use your past observations and the properties of your mystery soil sample to determine if your mystery sample would grow a healthy plant. _______________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________
  26. 26. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 26 of 29 Analogies Complete the analogy sentences to represent potting soil, sand, and clay. Analogies compare one object to another familiar object. An example has been done for you. Sand is like grits, thousands of tiny, rough rocks, etc. Clay is like __________________________________. Loam is like __________________________________. Wet Loam is like __________________________________. Wet Sand is like __________________________________. Wet Clay is like __________________________________. Wet Sand smells like __________________________________. Wet Clay smells like __________________________________. Wet Loam smells like __________________________________.
  27. 27. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 27 of 29 Where Does My Lunch Come From?
  28. 28. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 28 of 29 GLOBE Elementary Resources The website looks like the following: „
  29. 29. 3rd Grade Science Unit: 05 Lesson: 03 © 2009, TESCCC 08/01/09 page 29 of 29 BIBLOGRAPHY Benchmarks for Science Literacy American Association for Advancement of Science (November 25, 1993) Oxford University Press, Inc. American Association for Advancement of Science. (1993, November 25). Benchmarks for Science Literacy. Oxford University Press, Inc.

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