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Main Curriculum Tie:
Background For Teachers:
Soil contains space filled with water and gases (air). Water soaks in the ground from rain (and other forms of precipitation). Gases come from the air, plants, and animals. Water in the soil makes minerals available for plants to use.
Soil also contains organisms. Living organisms (such as bacteria, fungi, insects, etc.) are an important part of soil. Living organisms break down nonliving organic plants and animals in the soil, which makes soil rich and healthy for plants to grow in.
Every soil consists of minerals, organic matter, water, and air. The proportions may vary but the following list is the average composition of the major soil ingredients: 45 percent minerals, 25 percent water, 25 percent air, 5 percent organic matter (both living and dead).
Soil is important to plants. Soil holds plants in place and holds the water that plants need. Soil contains mineral nutrients that plants need in trace amounts to grow.
Soil is a critical resource. Most of our food crops are grown on soils that have
taken millions of years to form. Food can be grown without soil, but we do not have
enough hydroponic technology available to feed the world. It is important to prevent soil
erosion to protect valuable soils.
Intended Learning Outcomes:
Ask students what they think soil is composed of. Generate a list containing mineral or rock particles, air, water, living and dead organisms. Ask students to make a pie chart showing how much of each they think soil contains. Ask them to save it and compare their answers at the end of the activity.
Activity 1 - Looking for Organic and Inorganic Material
Activity 2 - Water in the soil
Activity 3 - Air in the soil
Created Date :